A Cello in the Reeds, The {Lost} Garden of Sundarya Lahari in Second Life

The {Lost} Garden of Sundarya Lahari (general)

I am guilty of exploring with my sounds turned off. In my own defence, I find sounds and music very distracting, so I usually travel around in ignorance of the soundscape in most destinations. I turned them on today and you should as well.

The first chapter of the story of The {Lost} Garden of Sundarya Lahari opens this afternoon on LEA13. I’ve learned a few things about the artist, Xineohp Guisse, in the past few days. One of them is that he really needs a keeper, but that’s not relevant right now. What is more to the point is that he builds amazing interactive environments – this one plays the cello. I’ll borrow some of his own words to explain. :)

The {Lost} Garden of Sundarya Lahari (general)

According to myths, the Ancients discovered a botanical species; a kind of reed that was capable of resonating a sound frequency when touched. The Ancients harvested these reeds and created a meditative and spiritual garden.

Quite by accident, the Ancients also discovered a symbiotic creature to the reeds; which they named the Pentapuss. The Pentapuss has the same form and biological structure as the reeds, and fed off the soundwaves made by the reeds. In doing so, their movements amongst the reeds nurtured the growth of the reeds to maturity.

The {Lost} Garden of Sundarya Lahari (general)

The build is based on live sampling of my cello “plucking”. Each “reed” in the build, upon collision, produces a specific note.

(It) is made up of two chambers on two towers:
1. An interactive chamber where avatars can move around, collide with the reeds and make their own music.
2.The main chamber; where the musical notes are being produced in a total unstructured fashion by the random collision of the creatures “the pentapuss”. The creatures move/dance in an absolute random algorithm and upon collision with the reeds, the reeds produces the sound of a single note. Being executed in a completely random fashion, a musical score is created that is ever-changing and evolving… never the same.

The {Lost} Garden of Sundarya Lahari (general)

Rather than a discordant series of “noises” I can tell you from experience that the reeds produce music. Soothing and often melodic music. It’s quite extraordinary.

There is a beautiful book available at the landing spot – you need to grab a copy. I don’t know what will happen in future chapters, there should be a new one each month until July, but I’m really looking forward to them. :)

The {Lost} Garden of Sundarya Lahari (general)
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