Saturday, October 2, 2010

"I, too, dislike it" or, Why I Built My Caerleon Museum of Identity Installation for Viewer 2--

Why I built my installation at the Caerleon Museum of Identity even though I know you probably don't use it, and why I hope you will log in with v2 to see it.

The short answer: I am in Second Life to experiment with what is new, and to keep changing and evolving. Shared media in viewer 2 means being able to play more than 1 movie file on prims on a parcel as well as having a media stream for the parcel.

Here is the longer answer: I started to build for v2 for SL7B in the summer, but in the end, built for the classic viewer, because hardly anyone I know (that means you!) regularly uses v2. The way v2 can handle video is much easier and versatile than the classic viewer. It has more possibilities. As artists, we should see what those can do, even when the tool feels uncomfortable at first in our hand/on our screen/as our interface, or maybe especially then.

My piece for Caerleon is a video art piece, and the prims are screens showing video, and also a short mixed reality gag, as video installation. It plays with the idea of still and moving images by using video of an Emily Dickinson poem poised over Boston Harbor outside the Institute for Contemporary Arts and putting it on various prims (in addition to some other things going on in the installation.)

I turn your attention to the poet Marianne Moore; her poem about poetry, a poet's response to poetry: "I, too, dislike it" kept echoing in my head as I used v2 to create "Somebody," my Caerleon piece, and not only for the toads (that will make more sense when you see the installation.) If we think of "poetry" as any art we are trying to make or experience, with its limitations of form and just of any representation, then once again Marianne Moore has a lot to say to us, this time about v2 and the interfaces with which we experience and create the virtual world.


I, too, dislike it: there are things that are important beyond all
this fiddle.
Reading it, however, with a perfect contempt for it, one
discovers in
it after all, a place for the genuine.
Hands that can grasp, eyes
that can dilate, hair that can rise
if it must, these things are important not because a

high-sounding interpretation can be put upon them but because
they are
useful. When they become so derivative as to become
the same thing may be said for all of us, that we
do not admire what
we cannot understand: the bat
holding on upside down or in quest of something to

eat, elephants pushing, a wild horse taking a roll, a tireless wolf
a tree, the immovable critic twitching his skin like a horse that
feels a
flea, the base-
ball fan, the statistician--
nor is it valid
to discriminate against 'business documents and

school-books'; all these phenomena are important. One must
make a distinction
however: when dragged into prominence by half poets, the
result is not poetry,
nor till the poets among us can be
'literalists of
the imagination'--above
insolence and triviality and can present

for inspection, 'imaginary gardens with real toads in them', shall
we have
it. In the meantime, if you demand on the one hand,
the raw material of poetry in
all its rawness and
that which is on the other hand
genuine, you are interested in poetry.

The Caerleon Museum of Identity, and my installation, "Somebody," best seen with, yes, Viewer 2, with media enabled to play automatically, opens Saturday, Oct 2, at 12 pm PDT. SLURL

Download Viewer 2 HERE
Feeling even more experimental??? Download newest beta version of Viewer 2 HERE

Thanks, Torley, for the great photo of my installation! See Torley's flckr

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