Wednesday, November 24, 2010

"Big Bang" with Peter Greenaway

A few months ago I spoke to Rose Borchovski about a large project involving the European director Peter Greenaway.
A very talented man who has created iconic movies such as The Cook, the thief, his wife and her lover, Drowning by Numbers, the Pillow Book winner of awards at Cannes and so on. A really great man who says exactly what he thinks. I mean, at a recent machinima event where he gave out awards in SL, he started off by saying he was disappointed in most of the submissions. It wasn't said with a mean spirit but rather just his honest reaction. And he then went on to say why. I loved it. This project is called "Big Bang" and was shown last week. click the link to the website and you will see the Daughter of Gears and the Rabbicorn with Susa Bubble on the main page. Furthermore, if you navigate the website you will see many SL artworks combined with the RL performers in the Gallery section.
My personal contribution was to build a set for the creation myth of Pan Gu. The bones in this video for Soleil show part of the set. Other than that just supplying a variety of sculptures for filming. Other contributors from Second Life ranged from Machinima for use in the film to artwork and were BobE Schism, Toxic Menges, Mescaline Tammas, Saskia Boddeke aka Rose Borchovski, soror Nishi, Elif Ayiter, Alpha Tribe, four Yip, Kriss Lehmann, Madcow Cosmos, Oriolus Oliva, Steff Ling, Werner Kurosawa and Amael Juran.
It was a huge undertaking by all with Rose Borchovski being the driving force behind the entire project. Rose is a very accomplished person in RL, and without her involvement Second Life, and all the artwork involved, would not have been in the project. It was similar with Aino Baar / Cristina García-Lasuén and the World Expo machinima I posted about over the last 6 months. Without Aino securing our involvement in RL, there would have been no machinima at the Spanish pavilion.
I don't know if I can explain what happened in the RL event. It involved a combination of dancers and cinema projected on a massive wall in Warsaw, Poland. Actually, I am going to post the notecard Rose gave me.


The story of the beginning of the Universe, the triumph of the human mind and the search for answers.

A multimedia crossover project to celebrate the opening of the Science Museum: Centrum Nauki Kopernik, on the 5th- 6th and 7th of November in Warsaw.
We make a 45-minute journey backwards from now: 2010 - to the start of the Universe – to the initial Big Bang… The beginnings.

Man has arrived at the time he can make his own man-made Big Bang – which could be of the greatest value to Mankind as the ultimate energy source or it could be the ultimate destruction of Mankind in self-made-annihilation. In the pursuit of this objective – ultimate survival or ultimate destruction - with all the relevant physical and all the relevant moral problems – mankind has educated himself to try to understand how the Universe started and how Life began. The current thinking is with The Big Bang. Indeed, the pursuit of the Micro-Big-Bang has educated us how to understand the Macro-Big-Bang.

This “Travel Backwards” will be a 45-minute after-dark light and projection show with live music, live performance and the cinema arts, using the facades of the new Kopernik Building.

It is a search of Susa Bubble (an animated androgynous Second-life character) to answer the questions: -Why are we here? -What is it all about? -Where are we going?
But what puzzles her most is: -Why is there something? -Why is there not nothing?

To find an answer to Susa’s soul-searching questions we travel
through 7 world mythic accounts of creation. Mythologies from China, New Zealand, Mayan, African ,Greek and Israel. We end with our most recent “myth” -The Big Bang.
These myths will be represented by the animation of Second life and
Real life footage, music and poetry related to their respective backgrounds.
We choose strongly to connect to a new media like Second life because Second Life is like a new universe created on the web.

After the final Big Bang has been accomplished on all the screens after the 45 minute program - there is a live finale with projections representing a CELEBRATION OF MANKIND – We show a compilation of what we call the faces of the world ( stills and moving images) and after that we connect it strongly to the Kopernik Museum and its purposes.

There will be a large choreographed dance of white costumed performers who will appear from behind the audience; they carry 50 different sized white balloons (illuminated from inside) with them. The dancers will converge choreographically through the audience towards the museum accompanied by the live music and the faces of the world.

For the complete credits of the project please visit the website:

Images of the set up on location:


I was going to post a reference letter that Mr. Greenaway wrote for me because well.... a reference letter from Peter Greenaway is pretty cool, and he said some really nice things about the importance of Bryn Oh. But i asked some friends if that would be wrong to do and they seemed to think it might be considered conceited to post something like that. So naturally I ignored them and asked some other friends in the hope that they would have the opposite opinion thus encouraging me to post it. Sadly they didn't. So I won't post it.
Instead I think I will embarrass BobE Schism with a story he told me. BobE filmed a great deal of the machinima for the event including my spot. He gave the editor 300 gigs of footage if I remember correctly.

So Mescaline and BobE stayed with Rose for a bit while working on this project and one day he met Mr Greenaway. Now little did he know, but Mr Greenaway was off galavanting somewhere and fell fracturing his arm. Before Mr Greenaway went to the doctor he came to the house and came across a very excited BobE who proceeded to take his fractured arm and shake it vigorously for an extended period. This is generally known as a handshake unless you have a fractured arm in which case it is then known as torture. I love stories where people do things which mortify them. I think that is because I regularly do them myself and it sets my mind at ease to know that I am not the only social tornado on the planet.

The last thing I did similar to that was when I was setting up my artwork at a gallery with the director. There was another artist showing with me who worked in very detailed glass sculpture. I had to place one of my paintings in the front window, walking past the area he was setting up and wouldn't you know it but I stepped on one of his fine glass sculptures and crushed it. I will never forget the crunching sound and the very still silence afterwords as everyone stared at me. The sculpture was worth $4000. I later gave him a card I made up which said he had one free keying (scratching with a car key) of any artwork of mine whenever he chose to do so. He has not used the card yet.

Anyway, I digress, so this was the Big Bang event and there is potential good news as it may become a traveling art performance. It was intended to be a one time show but there has been great interest so hopefully that all works out. Unfortunately, if it becomes a traveling show I wont be able to post the video of the event here for a while but when I can I will.

Below is the video showing some of the Pan Gu sim I built for it.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Machinima by Cole


ColeMarie Soleil is one of the top machinima artists in virtual worlds. She is constantly being commissioned to make a variety of videos for clients and almost never listens to their direction. There is a great strength in those with the ability to turn down paying jobs if the subject or direction is not to their liking, not to mention if its a client with an attitude. In our first life the client is always right, or so we are told. The client would argue that they are paying and therefore have all the say. In first life business and social interaction to business have been analyzed to the extent that it reflects closer to a conveyor belt mentality than the exchange of ideas.
For example earlier today I heard an interview on CBC where the interviewer asked a question which I now forget. The person being interviewed first said "what a great question!" before going into his response. I have heard this "what a great question" comment many many times over the last few years which makes me think someone with a psychology degree has determined that by validating a question before you answer it either makes the interviewer more apt to work with you during the interview, or perhaps it encourages the listener to think the response is particularly important or rare because the interviewer did a good job in asking something astute. It doesn't necessarily mean the question was "great", it just means the person being interviewed wants to place more emphasis on the importance of their response and that they know and like the response they plan on giving. What becomes kind of weird is that they both must understand the game they are playing while doing the interview.
I recall a few months back both Cole and I being asked to do an interview on the history of machinima for something. I remember thinking the questions were kind of bad, but I tried to answer them anyway. One question asked me what I thought were my own "masterpieces" and why. I responded by saying I didn't really feel comfortable calling anything a masterpiece and that I would likely look pretty conceited if I answered the question as they posed it, and would they mind if I skpped that one. I told Cole this and she sent me her response to the same questions. It went something like this... "I am not answering this question because it is stupid". "This question is silly as you clearly have done no work in learning the history of machinima up to this point, do some research." It went on like this for a bit then she eventually said that she didn't want to be one of the "experts" in their interview. Its the volatile nature of ColeMarie and I love it.

I actually just wanted to show a machinima Cole just made of my build at IBM, but got a bit sidetracked.

Monday, November 15, 2010


I was going to write a post on a Peter Greenaway project I am involved with this week but something more important has come up. It's actually pretty cool and I will blog it in the next week or so.

Tezcatlipoca Bisani is a much loved purple wolf in Second Life. He is an incredibly intelligent and funny person who has achieved amazing things in his life yet is the type to never speak of them, as he is too modest. A few years ago Tez went to Puerto Rico to work in shelters. There he found a street dog whom he fell in love with. Her name is Marisol and Tez brought her home to Boston with him when he came back.
On November 2nd a dog walker took Marisol along with four other dogs to Middlesex Fells reservation in Boston where a Pit Bull attacked her. Another dog stepped in to help Marisol and was savagely mauled and is now in the hospital. Marisol fled and has not been seen since.

This is a link to a map with info on where Marisol has been spotted.
Middlesex Fells

And this is a site that has been put up to help find Marisol.

Tez has been searching for Mari and has even hired a bloodhound to try to track her but to no avail. I had a pet dog who disappeared one day and I know the terrible feeling that brings. If anyone can think of some way to help Tez find Marisol, either by donating to rent the bloodhound again or if you are in the area and wish to have a walk about looking then please do so. I really wish I could do more to help.

Tez is the purple wolf in this machinima I made a few years ago.

hahah none of them knew why I was filming them. I am so evil.