Monday, June 02, 2008

I have left Second Front!

Here is a pic of myself hanging out in a property that is acting as an unofficial tribute to the popular multiplayer video-game, (the) World of Warcraft in Second Life.

Hey there Second Front fans!

The news and rumours surrounding my recent disappearance are now official. I have decided to leave Second Front in order to focus on solo performances, smaller-scale collaborations, my RL family and academic research.

These past 2 years have been a very wild ride. It seems like yesterday when I first proposed starting a performance art group based on the Western Front Society in Vancouver.

I remember the exact day quite well.... November 21, 2006 happened to be my RL Wife's birthday and I had edited my avatar's appearance to my trademark style probably 6 hours before we celebrated her birthday over dinner. Naturally, she was the first one I asked to join Second Front. Basically, a few days after that, I asked everyone that I thought would be a good fit for the group via email solicitations and the core ensemble of 4 members had already been assembled. By about 2 weeks, we had grown to 6 and shortly after we had recruited even more high-profile Second Fronters such as Gazira Babeli. In fact, we had our first performance documented within a week of forming.

So now, change is in the air. In September, I am returning to Graduate Studies at Simon Fraser University's School of Interactive Arts and Technology. I am working towards a Masters of Interactive Arts there. This should give me the necessary excuse to further explore virtual worlds under the guise of "homework"... tee hee! ;-)

Also, I have been spending every Sunday with the Ars Virtua Guild (yes, the same group as the Contemporary Art Museum in SL) in the World of Warcraft as we have been developing my performance art series there.

So, lets just say that I have been extremely busy with all my other projects and upcoming research. You might not hear too much about Wirxli in the near future since some of my other projects involve my ALTs. I will still leave the door open though to collaborating with individuals from Second Front - I still love and respect them all and I am sure they will produce sublime (and realtime) work.

As for the Avatar Orchestra Metaverse, I am still unsure how often I can still commit to rehearsals since most of my free time has been on weekends and most of their rehearsals are on Tuesday afternoons. I will keep you posted with what happens there. Speaking of which, I promise to blog about my most recent AOM composition. I am still waiting for more archives to arrive before I am ready to blog that particular posting.

Ok, stay tuned for more sporadic Wirxli postings in the near future :-)

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Smart Mobbed - My Life as Howard Rheingold...

Here is a pic of Wirxli (me) as Howard Rheingold the bank manager sitting at his desk in the Lynden Labs bank

Hey there fellow academic Rheingoldiggers and Smart Mobsters!

These past few weeks have been very intense and I have hardly any time to reflect on recent events. There has been a lot of change in my life lately and it might still be awhile before I come to terms with everything and post it gradually onto my blog here.

For now, I thought I would reflect on my brief and controversial life as the pioneer of the Virtual Community, Howard Rheingold.

For my final performance with Second Front, I decided to hijack Howard's avatar identity as he was one of the panelists being presented in San Francisco. Of course, I had to become "Howard" for a couple of days so I could get comfortable in my new role as Howard's evil doppelganger. To read about this performance and panel session, please go to Second Front's official blog posting about it here.

I just want to be extremely clear with you here that by no means did I intend to be the real Howard Rheingold. The whole performance was about identity theft and how one's avatar persona and trademarked personality - even if it is based on one's Real Life (RL) self - is completely at the mercy of Lynden Lab's Terms of Service.

Did you know they own the rights to use your avatar in any context that they see fit?

They can make you advertise for Second Life's corporate side or (gasp!) perhaps even force your avatar clone to appear in a Pepsi ad or something, with only your tacit consent... By tacit consent, I mean that you had briefly read the "Terms of Service Agreement" and had signed it perhaps without thinking of the consequences.

Anyway, Second Front wanted to dramatize the possible consequences of this Terms of Service and so we took many liberties with the original panelists that had their avatars willingly copied into the virtual world. Most of the panelists became thieves trying to steal more identities. In my case, I made the new co-opted Howard a shrewd bank manager who has been charged with the service of protecting Lynden-owned avatar identities. This of course, runs intentionally counter to the RL Howard's more open and friendly hopes for the potential(s) inherant in a "Virtual Community". I have twisted Howard's whole personality into that of a Lynden Labs crony who locks all avatar identities into a vault to be used and re-purposed by Lynden Labs in any manner that they wish.

Howard himself (the RL one) has a regular avatar in SL with his own office and an embedded virtual research practice. In fact, his usual avvie happened to wander into the Lynden Labs bank to find to his horror, that a stolen clone of his avvie had been virally possesed by Lynden Labs and this mutated and Wirxlified doppelganger was gradually being seduced by the Bank Secretary, of all people!(!)

It is my hope that Howard and the other panelists understand why we (Second Front) did this piece and twisted their core personalities into something much darker and shallow than who they really are in RL (and via their official SL interactions).

Here are some more pix for you...

Here is another pic of
"Howard" posing in front of the Lynden Treasury.


Things got steamy between Howard and his secretary...was this in the script? Of course, the secretary was only using "Howard" to get ahold of the key to the vault. I think this scene has been adopted by many James Bond style films in the past ;-)

Here is a close up of Wirxli/Howard and "Christiane Paul"...

So, those are some pix from that Second Front performance called "Grand Theft Avatar III - Heist City".

To get into the role of "Howard", I had to spend some time in close covert proximity to him. In addition, I understood the necessity of making at least one pilgrimage to his personal headquarters...

Here is another pic of "Howard" in his official office...

Here is yet another angle of Howard's office...For the purpose of my blog, I had decided to show you Howard's social networking maps and some portraits of the Real McCoy. I thought it was best that I also corrupt Howard's social networking processes to ensure that my approach to the new Lyndensque Virtual Community would be kept under devious lock and key.

Here was the official Purple paisley texture used for Howard's t-shirt for Second Front's GTA III performance..

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Haledol Minotaure Daydreaming...

When my performance with Second Front first started up, I had some minor problems locating the venue...sigh! Maybe I should return to rehab? Or, maybe I should pawn off my pink halo for some.....???? ;-)

Hey there Haledoled-up Minotaurists!

Finally, I have had a chance to reflect on my most recent performance with Second Front which took place quite some time ago...well, everything in Second Life seems like the distant past, but I digress..... Ummmm...geez, my RL self is really tired as I type this...I had better quickly summarize the photos before I fall aSLeep. If you want to know any details about this performance just go to Second Front's official blog and read all the related posts here, here and here...

Ok, here are some "exclusive" (in other words "leftover") photos from that performance session...

Here I am next to Fau Ferdinand The Minotaure during our rehearsal's rehearsal... Does this make sense? My good pal and fellow Second Fronter, Bibbe is also in this pic.

Here I am posing with an easter bunny in the padded cell with some Second Fronters Tran and Bibbe. Yes, this performance was seen as a kind of Easter celebration.

Here I am with my re-configurable holy cross next to some audience members.... Some of the audience members were trying to out-do our act with some gamey references and a token skull...

Now, I will show you some images that I was using to mass-spam the padded cell with. A swarm of unexpected replicated images are collectively called "goo". I could say magic words and conjure each "goo" image to appear. So for example, if I said "Iraq", my customized Iraqi flags would appear all over the room. Anyway, enough about the dull technicalities... Here are some close-ups of my chosen goo-images for this particular performance...

I used this image of Lucifer's symbol mainly for my performance-suit's pattern but it was also available as a potential "goo" image.

This was the closest I would come to referencing the iconography of Jesus.

This Iraqi flag was modified to suit my particular purple aesthetic. I have been inspired by Iraq lately since meeting the Iraqi SL Philosopher Sarmad Alsarmady on Facebook. This guy really wants to find a way to expose the entire Iraqi population to the wonders of Second Life...and more power to him! You could say that this flag is my personal tribute to Sarmad.

Since the Minotaure was our main theme, I just HAD to also have a customized Spanish flag at my disposal.

I actually forgot to goo this image during the performance but it was on stand-by. Yes, this is also a Wirxlified modification of an emblematic image. Does anyone remember the Labyrinth game for the C-64?

After the performance, I was able to relax for a bit by allowing myself to be interviewed on the front patio of my PR Office by Joshua Khorana (Josh Kho in RL) of the University of British Columbia (UBC)...

Stay tuned for this interview to be released in a print format sometime soon...
Also please stay tuned for April 14th, where Second Front performs our next opus, "Grand Theft Avatar 3: Heist City".

Saturday, March 22, 2008

XANADRuuL Dome still in development...

Here is a pic of the Orchestra's Architect Dethomas Dibou and instrument builder, Bingo Onomatopoeia overseeing the development from inside of the dome for my new composition, XANADRuuL.

Hey there Cutting-Edge Chrome-Domes!

For those who are regular readers of my blog, you were probably expecting me to post about Second Front's most recent performance already but I must say that I have like 20+ pix from that event so blogging it will take quite awhile since I spend time doing individual photo-captions and fine-tuned hyperlinks etc. etc.

For those who missed it, Second Front played a few days ago on Orange Island as part of the Dorkbot Paris event in Montmartre.

You will see the documentation on both this blog and the official Second Front blog very soon, I promise!

For now, I thought I would blog about something else that only needed a few pictures and text pre-made to post...

So, here are some more pictures about Dethomas Dibou's fabulous work on the dome that is being custom built for my upcoming composition with the Avatar Orchestra Metaverse called "XANADRuuL"....

Here is a closeup of Bingo inside of the dome checking out all the poseballs to make sure they are all in order.

Here is Bingo inside the dome again...I really like the architecture on the same property next door to the dome...Is this one of Dethomas' buildings? It looks like the major commission he made for Il Giornale.

Here is Bingo standing on one of the detailed beams. The patterns almost have an Islamic feel to them. AWESOME!

Once again, we have Dethomas working hard on the dome.... On closer inspection, I am thinking that maybe the dome is now hexagonal and not pentagonal as originally planned? Hmmm...I hope it is not too late..maybe I am hallucinating the number of sides...hmmmm...

Here is an extreme detail of one of the ornamented beams.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Gazira Babeli's 2nd Solo Show - 1st in RL!


Find more videos like this on Museo del Metaverso

This opening night video footage is by the Curator of the Museo del Metaverso, Roxelo Babenco. This opening was so fabulous, I wish all RL opening nights could be as surreally sublime and aesthetically pleasing as this!
Seriously, you just HAVE to check this video out! I can watch this over and over and over! This is one of the most fantastic documents I have EVER witnessed!


Here is the official exhibition poster. As you can see, it is Gazira's first show in RL. It looks like the curator Domenico Quaranta is making an official catalogue for this exhibition and I think that my Second Front colleague Man Michinaga (Patrick Lichty in RL) as well as performance art legend Alan Dojoji (Alan Sondheim in RL) . I hope I can read a copy in RL :-)

Hey there Gazophiles and Generation-Idol Idolaters!

My Second Front colleague-in-crime Gazira Babeli just had a legendary retrospective show in both Odyssey Island and in RL at the Fabio Paris Gallery in Italy.

Here is the official press release for this show:

OPENING
Saturday, March 15th 2008

'Real Life'
fabioparis artgallery, 6 PM
Catalog curated by Domenico Quaranta

'Second Life' - Locusolus 9 AM SLT

Gazira Babeli is an artist who lives and works in the virtual world of Second Life, where she was born on 31 March 2006. Like all inhabitants of virtual worlds she is an identity construction known as an avatar, but unlike them, she does not acknowledge the presence of a “human” controlling her. In this short space of time she has earned attention and respect with her provocative performances which explore the issues of the body, space and identity in virtual worlds. Babeli acts like a virus, unleashing earthquakes and showers of icons extrapolated from pop culture, or spreading epidemics which deform the bodies of other residents of Second Life. “Gaz” has become a multivalent term, and a household name in her virtual world. The aura of mystery that surrounds her has engendered a kind of legend, which quickly moved beyond the confines of Second Life.

Gazira Babeli is a “virtual” artist, but her work is “real”. She explores the body, space, identity. She compares her oeuvre with art history. She talks about us. She is closer than we think, with our multiple identities, our way of representing ourselves, our lives in front of the screen. To those who ask her if there is a point in living in a virtual world, she mockingly responds: “What about you? How’s life in Microsoft Office?”. Seen in this light her work acquires meaning and efficacy even outside the world which generated it, as her numerous appearances in shows and festivals demonstrates. Now, in this solo exhibition at the Fabio Paris Art Gallery, the artist presents a selection of works that reflect the two fundamental poles of her oeuvre: her world and her identity as a virtual artist. Babeli lives in a simulated world, a realistic, 3D universe generated by castles of computing code, yet “inhabited” and experienced on a daily basis by millions of people. Her work explores the conventions and contradictions of this world, addressing concepts like time, space and the body by simply manipulating language. Her work is ‘performance’ in the purest sense of the term: language which generates action. Bodies change shape and come alive; giant towers collapse and then rise from their ashes once more; mysterious forces and objects take possession of us. But Babeli’s main work is Gazira herself, and the knowing manipulation of her legend, as shown in the video triptych Saint Gaz' Stylite and the movie Gaz' of the Desert (March 2007), the first high definition film entirely shot in a virtual world. Babeli mixes hagiography and slapstick, surrealism and country music, to tell the story of her life behind the screen, midway between isolation and sociality, asceticism and temptation.

Gazira Babeli has taken part in festivals and exhibitions in Italy (Peam 2006 - The Diamond, Pescara 2006; V07, Venice) and abroad (Deaf 2007, Rotterdam 2007); and with the collective Second Front she took part in Performa 07 (New York). A year from her birth, the retrospective Gazira Babeli: [Collateral Damage] (10 April - 31 May 2007), put on in Second Life in a museum-sized venue, represented a definitive confirmation. In the space of two months the show attracted more than one thousand visitors. Her work has also elicited the attention of publications like El Pais, La Stampa, Liberazione, Exibart, Der Spiegel and Kunstzeitung. Gazira Babeli is her first solo exhibition in the “real” world.
http://gazirababeli.com

The exhibition will also see the publication of a book, Gazira Babeli (edited by Domenico Quaranta, with essays by Mario Gerosa, Patrick Lichty and Alan Sondheim).


And.... Here is the other press release for the show...

*GAZIRA BABELI*

Saturday, march 15, 18.00 pm

Fabio Paris Art Gallery
via Alessandro Monti 13 - 25121 Brescia
tel. 030 3756139 - Skype: fabioparisbs
www.fabioparisartgallery.com
From march 15, to april 30
15.00-19.00 pm everyday except holidays

Second Life, Locusolus simulator 9 AM SLT
Party<->Crasher<->Party
Second (Real) Audience vs. Real (Second) Audience
Anti-Invitation (No Invitation Needed)
Crash the party! Crash your car! Crash the Sim!
All Live!
Eat! Drink! Barf! Love! Hate! Sleep! Dance!
Do Art! Think! Fight!


Ok, I know you really only wanted to check out this blog to look at the photos from the opening day/night to see if your avatar appeared in one of the pix...it is all about "see and be seen" anyways so....here you go...lets hope/pray, you were visible enough to blogged about at Gaz's show...

Worship the Golden Gaz! Here I am with Gaz impersonator, Violette LeShelle. I must say though that she was not the only impersonator that evening. Not to be outdone at the opening, I realized that I also had to fit in to some degree and at least wear an official Gaz hat for solidarity ;-) I think the official golden Gaz bust set the tone for the whole evening and for her place in virtual history. Overall, I would say that Gaz has reached the point of absolute deification which is perfectly fine in my books since Second Front is also along for the ride ;-)

This is the closest I was able to get with showing the entire audience that managed to attend Gaz's show at its peak. Gaz herself guestimated that about 65 people were stuffed into this Black Cube Aquarium. Well, at least it was white inside enough for all the conversative art critics...heheheheheheh ;-) I am glad that Olga took pictures of the gallery cube itself because I had no idea what kind of space I was hanging out in...I was so strung out from the art strung onto the walls to notice...WHOA!

This pic shows the a special camera angle that I took that illustates the intermediary space between gallery-space and ummmmmm.... "art"-space....I mean, life is art and art is life especially in Second Life, right? SIGH! Well, on Locusolus the whole area is self-consciously arts-infested and that is a good thing, right? On another note, I hope you like the coloured orbs that people were playing with inside the gallery. All I had to bring to this event was my token Toyota Scion...ooops! I did not mean to make a product placement...if only I could invoice Toyota for this...SIGH! Yes it is true that my avatar was nodding off throughout the exhibition. This had nothing to do with my interest in the show, for the record. In fact, it even had nothing whatsoever to do with drug use (honest)!!! Rather, my RL duties happened to siphon off my attention span at the same time the peak of this opening occurred... TRIPLE SIGH!
Oh, I should also mention that another Second Front colleague was in attendance and this was none other than Bibbe Oh...Yaaay!


Here is a side view of the gallery crowd and (yes, of course) my Scion. Also featured in this gratuitious group photo is the curator Domenico Quaranta's new look and Olga's own Gaz impersonation.

Here are some great examples of Gaz's trademark deformed avatars that Second Front used for the Spawn of the Surreal Performance a year ago. I loved the highly detailed pictures that Gaz had produced. The detail was so high, we could just about see our own reflections and Great Art, of course is entirely based on the degree to which we can gaze at our own glamourous reflections, right? I also loved the gold SLeaf detailing on Gaz's bust statue... I guess Gaz has truly entered the lapdance of luxury this time and has rezzed at least one brass ring...woo hooo! I am truly happy for her as everyone knows in SL, wealth = total happiness :-)

Here is a picture of myself with Man Michinaga who is also a colleague with me in Second Front. Man is in his/her trademark incarnation of Ciccolina. Behind us, you can see more reflective paintings that Gaz had made. I love the Goth poses! The whole show was truly amazing...I was in awe of all of the images and this is coming from someone who usually only cares about Performance Art.

Here I am with a deformed incarnation of Odyssey's curator, Sugar Seville as well as another Second Front colleague Fau Ferdinand who sported her own golden avvie. Also included in this scene is a piece of holographic sirloin steak...well, it is a hologram of some kind of meat offering...hmmmm.... Maybe it was the meat-confusion or perhaps the proliferation of biohazard signs but Sugar Seville seemed to remark, "I cant see anything with this mega prim twirling around".

Once again, we have a richly detailed (but necessarily gilded) group portrait with the understated and unrezzed Gazira Babeli herself with our favourite videographer nearby - Evo Szuyuan.

Congrats to Gaz on yet another mindblowing and overflowing retrospective show!

Please stay tuned for Second Front's next performance at Dorkbot Paris this friday at 12:30 PM SLT....

Monday, March 17, 2008

More developments for XANADRuuL...

From Left-Right: Liz Solo, Wirxli Flimflam (me), Fernsing Llewellyn and Bingo Onomatopoeia. This pic shows you Saturday's Choir sessional and receiver HUD test for the Avatar Orchestra Metaverse. All these tests and building sessions will be part of the Premiere on May 10th of my 3rd Orchestral Opus, XANADRuuL... In this pic, you can see a halo over my head. This halo is part of the Reciever HUD interface designed by the Orchestra's in-house instrument builder, Bingo Onomatopoeia. Since this session, Bingo has also developed a similar halo HUD for the angelic choir...Woooo Hooo! I cannot wait to see this! On another note, I took this pic right after the Curator, Humming Pera left....ooops! Sigh!

Greetings XANADRuuLERS!

Many of you probably thought tonight's blog posting was going to be about Gazira Babeli's newest Solo Show on Odyssey Island but that posting is still under development as I have a few pictures to prepare before posting. So, I thought I would post a "quickie" update for you first...

In addition to the above pic where you can see that Bingo has been working hard on developing the Orchestral performance HUDs, our Architect Dethomas Dibou has been working equally as hard building the dome where the Orchestra will premiere my newest Magnum Opus, XANADRuuL....

Check out and see how the dome looks so far....

Here is the most recent assembly of the dome that the Avatar Orchestra Metaverse's Architect Dethomas Dibou is building for my newest composition, XANADRuuL If you look carefully, you can see Dethomas working inside the dome.

This picture shows the underlying purple poseball "flying" buttress structure underneath the pentagonal (and occasionally hexagonal) walls that will eventually wrap around this dynamic exoskeleton when it is time for the Orchestra's Dress Rehearsals. Once again, you can see Dethomas hovering inside the dome. Unlike Architects working around the clock in RL, Dethomas can assemble the entire Modernist structure by himself in realtime.

This pic shows Dethomas' first attempts at building the dome. Here was what he emailed me when sent me this very first pic...


hi jeremy
i started building your dome
its very difficult
but i will do my best
:-)
colors and more we can made later
first i need the shape
nice day

detlef


It reads kinda like a Haiku, doesn't it? :-D

Saturday, March 08, 2008

XANADRuuL's First Rehearsals...

Here is my official promo-photo for that May 10th Voice++ concert at Open Space gallery in Victoria. I will not actually be using these speakers but I thought I would look good next to them in the promo photo since I want to at least portray the same glamourous aura of Modern Genius that Karlheinz Stockhausen himself possessed....



...I am composing an elegy for him, since he died just last year...

Hey there Karlheinz 57s, Serial(ist) Killers, Iron K├╝rtens and choir-caseloads of angelic audiophiles!

I may as well post all the early archives of my first reheasals for my new Stockhausen tribute composition now since it is starting to roll into full swing dress-rehearsal mode very soon and this primitive process will soon be forgotten lest I archive it straight away!

For this Voice ++ concert on May 10th (a Saturday), I will be premiering my 3rd major opus called "XANADRuuL" and is dedicated entirely to the immortal memory of our favourite alien ambassador, Karlheinz Stockhausen (yes, I like to namedrop him as much as possible). For all those who are not yet in the know about Stockhausen and his work, my advice is to not bother trying to understand what he was all about since he was from another star-system anyway... Lets just say that mere Earthly humanoids with some minor exceptions never quite understood him nor his musical output. Since I am also an alien (and a SLemale), I fully understand where he is coming from and I actually like some of his compositions (especially Kontakte, for example).

Anyways, I am not sure what Stockhausen's ghost will think about my tribute from beyond the grave but regardless of his opinion, I am very excited about this gig because I am being double billed with an eqaully important Modernist Genius Composer (MGC is the acronym if you are ever in an office administration job) named Pauline Oliveros (Free Noyes in SL). This is her very first SL composition for the Avatar Orchestra Metaverse, and is an adaptation of a composition she wrote for Trombones and Oscillator in 1999 called "The Heart of Tones (THoT)". Well, you will hear more about Oliveros' composition very shortly since I will also be hyping that one to death but in the meantime, I already have prepared some hype for you about my newest large-scale music composition to date:

XANADRuuL = Stockhausen's Pleasuredome 4 Sirius Business" (2007/2008)
Composed by Wirxli Flimflam aka. Jeremy Owen Turner.

XANADRuuL is a Second Life composition in 3 sections created for the Avatar Orchestra Metaverse. One can see this composition as an official elegy/tribute to the Modernist music pioneer, Karlheinz Stockhausen. XANADRuuL was created from samples that were solely derived from the Composer's (Wirxli's) own digitally manipulated voice. This composition was inspired by Stockhausen's claim of being an alien from Sirius and so the 3 sections of this composition correspond to Sirius A, B and C stars. In addition, there are also many references to Xanadu (including the movie with Olivia Newton John). The Opening Ceremonies take place on Sirius A where angels sing along with the selected voice samples from heavenly heights on the ceiling of a pentagonal geodesic dome and also on Sirius B where meandering avatars vainly attempt to communicate with these alien angelic muses using only pre-recorded samples. Sirius C is a "meta-composition" and is perfomed by the public throughout Second Life.


Anyways, I hope this hype will make the program notes for this RL Voice Festival.

In the meantime, check out these photos from some of the earliest days of performing XANADRuuL (including earlier today)...

This is the only pic I have that was taken earlier this morning and was the Orchestra's very first "full ensemble" rehearsal...This is also the first rehearsal to take place on a Saturday in order to accomodate the North American members of the Orchestra. I hope there will at least be a couple more of these saturday rehearsals before the big day on May 10th. For this cross-continental breakfast, you will see that I had to use a temporary rehearsal dome while waiting for the official one to be built by the Orchestra's Architect, Dethomas Dibou. Considering I have full VIP access as a SLebrity, I managed to score the Avastar's Star Lounge Dome which was good enough since it came with a swimming pool and some couches. Since the swimming pool was about the same size as the performance area I had in mind for the HUD performers, I had them walk around waist deep in that pool while the angelic choir had to compromise a little bit by singing beside the pool rather than being suspended from the dome's ceiling. Once the official dome has been built, the angelic choir should be able to hover from the dome's celing without any hassle or throbbing back pain. I am glad this was not a dress rehearsal, because everyone forgot to wear white (including me) and one of the choir members named Fernsing Llewellyn seemed more comfortable singing in the pool than keeping her critical (and divine) distance... sigh! Oh, before I forget, the HUD was designed once again by Bingo Onomatopoeia. You can see the HUD interface on the screen. The HUD has 23 differently coloured pentagonal buttons which makes perfect sense since the official dome will also be pentagonal. Bingo is also working on the halos for the HUD performers but I will blog about that feature when the performers have tested it out during the next rehearsal...

This slightly earlier picture shows the very first time that I managed to score the Avastar's Star Lounge dome. In this case, just the two of us were able to rehearse. Humming (the curator) is playing the part of the singing angel whereas I was playing the Devil...er...I mean the HUD performer ;-) Humming tried to approximate the angelic suspension by hovering near the ceiling. I recommended that until we get proper places for the angelic choirmembers to be suspended from, they might have to resort to sitting on the couches during our rehearsals.... OH, THE HARDSHIP OF A STRUGGLING SLEBRITY MUSICIAN!!!! ;-)

A little later that evening, my colleague in Second Front, Bibbe Oh popped by the Star Lounge to hang out for a bit. I really like her Terrorist T-Shirt...She told me it is part of an art-series she is working on...VERY KEWL! I forgot to mention that in that large-scale rehearsal shown above, other co-performers in Second Front are also moonlighting as Orchestra performers. Liz Solo is going to be singer, Tran Spire offered to be the camera-avatar and Fau Ferdinand was also there for (im)moral support :-D

This pic was taken quite some time ago...Like, maybe a month ago (gasp!). SL Historians, please take note that one month ago does not qualify as being Pre-History, ok?? Anyways, we were on top of a gallery on Odyssey Island. The whole gang included Weave Noyes and Fernsing Llewellyn. As you can see from the text, we were talking about Pauline's piece but we also had a choir pre-sectional rehearsal meet'n'greet for XANADRuuL. For example, this was the first time, I had actually met Fernsing and Weave for the first time in the SLesh.

Ok, this is probably the very first pic relating directly to XANADRuuL in any way. This pic is so old, it was taken sometime in the Winter (it is Spring now, right? So, it is old now, right?). This pic was also taken on Odyssey Island and illustrated the very first choir tests for XANADRuuL. Humming was even dressed up for the occasion but I think she forgot that it was no longer Remembrance Day as her Poppy Dress looked slightly out of context...heheheheh... Just kidding, Humming! Anyways, Aurel Miles was testing her voice with us and her GF Yvette Tzara was akso hanging out...it was a very nice time!

Anyways, the piece is coming along just...er... Swimmingly...and unless I get some ghostly advice from Stockhausen before the next Saturday rehearsal (might be next week), things should go along the same linear path that I had originally put into place...phew! Please scroll down for some more blogging (including more composer gossip)...

Saturday, February 16, 2008

En Route to Upgrade Paris...

It did not take me long to get dressed for the occasion: Dr. Seuss hat, Senegalese flag-abstraction jacket and French flag-abstraction pants....I was good to go and was looking forward to meeting up with some other Second Front-ers, the curators and Gawlab from Dakar (Senegal) who were giving an artist talk before us.

MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM...that Banana Dacquiri was yummy! I felt like drinking one at my PR Office a few minutes before meeting the rest of the Second Front crew for our artist talk at Upgrade Paris. I needed a stiff drink as I wanted to feel more relaxed and tropical - Senegal is a pleasant and well-weathered French colony, right? ;-)

But, all was not as it seemed as I found out a little bit later...

To read more about today's artist talk, please go to the Second Front blog posting about it here....

Second Wall-ker and the AOM on ZKM Island...

Here I am wearing my wall in front of my PR office. Yes, that is a portrait of Phil Spector that I have decided to hang on my wall...Separated at birth, you ask? Yes, quite possibly so :-)

Hey there Wirxli loving Wallflowers, Bloated Berliners and ZKM-o-philes!

Phew! What a week! Well, what a LAST week, that is! Last week, I had 2 gigs on one day. The pic above gives you a sneak peek into my new performance with Second Front called "Second Wall-ker Center - Dancing About Architecture"....Please check out our official blog and read all about it here. Basically, it was hosted by the Director's Lounge in Berlin and the ZKM as part of the Berlinale festival.

Normally, I would summarize what happened on this blog too but I am just too SLeepy to do any more writing...I have literally just posted the Second Front blog posting a few minutes ago... I now have a full time office job in RL and so I only have weekends to practice art in SL these days. Geez, I only have like 16 hours from now before I have to appear again for Upgrade Paris....yikes!

I have barely recovered from my Valentine's Day festivities and already it is back to virtual work....sigh!

Ok, so before Second Front's performance, I also performed yet again with the Avatar Orchestra Metaverse and yes, we performed the classics as usual but this time we performed on the exciting and high-profile ZKM Island...here are a couple of pix from this event...

AVATAR ORCHESTRA METAVERSE ON ZKM ISLAND...

Here we all are on a packed oil rig playing Miulew Takahe's classic composition, Rue Blanche.


Here is a close-up of me playing Takahe's other classic called Fragula inside a special Tron-inspired mountain located on ZKM Island. We would play Fragula inside the mountain and we would suddently leap outside the box...er...mountain...er...grid...er...whatever...ummm...I think I need to SLeep in RL now....zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

p.s. I did not take a pic of Bingo Onomatopoeia's WNK performance because the space was so laggy at the time, I could barely even hear my own sounds in realtime let alone take any photos without crashing the world...sigh!

Friday, February 01, 2008

Happy Belated New Year!

As I am still technically in rehab, I am not really allowed to indulge in the real "bubbly". To celebrate Belated New Years Day, I have decided to spend some time inside a bubble instead...In this case, it is the sonically enhanced bubble vehicle belonging to my Orchestral colleague, Goodwind Seiling.

Hey there Post-Party Poopers, Belated Bubbles and Rehab Addicts!

HAPPY BELATED NEW YEAR!

Yaaay! It is Feb 1st and I am exactly one month behind schedule! I guess this would officially make it a Belated New Year worth celebrating, eh?

Sadly, the last time I posted on my blog was technically last year...Is anyone counting? SIGH!

The end of 2007 was a major burn-out for me because of all the SL Coke I was doing...it kinda got to my head and I am sure the entire Second Front group also went a little snowblind since our most recent debaucherous fiasco in Miami was a dayglo green blizzard out of nowhere!

Anyway, I have been spending the first part of this year in Rehab which is probably a good thing since I have an upcoming full time job in RL. This job will be 9-5 PM from Monday-Friday so I probably will not be active in SL nor on my blog until the weekends....

However, I have not totally faded from the scene. I consider 2008 to be the year of being "Born Again" although in my case, that does not really mean all that much...heheheheh....

I still have some life left in me in the form of:

1) A top-secret performance with Blued Food at an undisclosed location (I cannot show you the rehearsal documentation until later).

2) Feb 10th - Upcoming Second Front and Avatar Orchestra Metaverse performances curated by Olga Wunderlich will be taking place on the ZKM Island that is part of the Director's Lounge in Berlin.

3) Feb 16th - A talk with Second Front following a bunch of Senegalese artists and theorists as part of Upgrade Paris. This event will be organized by Toto Donat.

4) May 10th - My new composition called "XANADRuuL: Stockhausen's Pleasuredome 4 Sirius Business" (2008) will be premiered at the Open Space's Voice festival. This 3rd musical opus of mine will be performed by the Avatar Orchestra Metaverse accompanied by additional choir members and will be curated by Humming Pera (Tina Pearson).

5) A whole slew of top-secret collaborations in SL and the World of Warcraft which I am not at liberty to disclose yet.

Well, enough about the future...here are some more photos from the blast from the slightly earlier past...well, earlier today anyway... All these photos were taken from my Orchestral colleague Goodwind Seiling's (Sachiko Hayashi's) installation at the HUMlab in Sweden... Basically, you enter a floating bubble vehicle and ram into the various spokes inside the geodesic dome...the experience is kinda like musical bumper cars except one might guess that Eno was the engineering guide rather than some demented fair-ride operator.

Ok..here they are...

Here is a zoomed-out pic showing the entire geodesic dome... If you look closer, you can see me inside the dome (and inside a bubble as well)...It seems that the "dome" is a common architectural theme for Orchestra members these days since I will also be using a custom geodesic dome for my upcoming Stockhausen tribute piece for mixed Orchestra and Choir called "XANADRuuL: Stockhausen's Pleasuredome 4 Sirius Business".


Here is proof that I actually attended Goodwind Seiling's show at the HUMlab. Although this was the first image I documented, I am posting it as if it was a closing image as I am treating it like end-credits....hee hee!