Must See! 1867, The Virtual Pfaffenthal in Second Life

1867 The Virtual Pfaffenthal (general)

I went to visit Pfaffenthal in complete ignorance. I hadn’t read any blog posts at that point, so I didn’t really have any idea what I was going to find.

I came away with a renewed understanding of how much world history I don’t know. This was a very cool experience!

1867 The Virtual Pfaffenthal (general)

If, like me, you were unaware – Pfaffenthal is the name of a quarter in Luxembourg City. In the mid 1900s it was home to a Fortress known as the Gilbralter of the North, the culmination of 9 centuries of fortification.

As a result of a major kerfuffle known as the Luxembourg Crisis, the 1867 Treaty of London decreed that the fortifications had to be torn down.

1867 The Virtual Pfaffenthal (general)

As part of a major exhibition, the Luxembourg City Museum has commissioned an 8 sim build recreating Pfaffenthal before the dismantling took place.

Their website highlights this component of the full exhibit, and even provides quotes from some of our favourite travel bloggers. Visitors to the Museum can use Occulus Rift to explore the virtual build, but all of us can access it through our viewer.

1867 The Virtual Pfaffenthal (general)

The landing point provides an informative notecard and free avatars in the appropriate period costume. You’ll also encounter friendly guides and support staff.

The build itself is wonderful (and beautiful). I found a 1904 photo of the street portrayed above – it’s a remarkably accurate reproduction. Go wander the streets of Pfaffenthal and learn something about the City of Luxembourg in 1867. I loved it!

1867 The Virtual Pfaffenthal (general)

A Bit of Red in Second Life

A Bit of Red by Kicca Igaly & Nessuno Myoo (moderate)

I had this really weird dream last night. I was high in the air over the grid, wandering through a delightfully deconstructed tribute to the Phantom of the Opera.

A Bit of Red by Kicca Igaly & Nessuno Myoo (moderate)

I’m describing the dream as “weird” because I don’t typically spend any time contemplating melodramatic tales of doomed love and tragic obsession.

A Bit of Red by Kicca Igaly & Nessuno Myoo (moderate)

I journeyed from the Opera House, through a landscape containing vignettes of key emotional moments in the story, all to the accompaniment of a classical music stream.

A Bit of Red by Kicca Igaly & Nessuno Myoo (moderate)

It was a beautiful dreamscape, but my sojourn ended when I fell through a grate and wound up exploring tunnels.

I’m certain there are perfectly good Freudian & Jungian explanations for my mind’s fantasies. It’s probably better if I don’t try to find out what they are. :)

A Bit of Red by Kicca Igaly & Nessuno Myoo (moderate)

Strings, A Superb New Work by Cica Ghost in Second Life

Strings by Cica Ghost (moderate)

There are many wonderful artists in Second Life. I know that when I hear about a new installation by any of them that I’m going to like it.

Every now and then, the word like is a gross understatement. I love Strings, the latest work by Cica Ghost.

Strings by Cica Ghost (moderate)

Cica never gives to much away in terms of her thinking behind her builds. At least not to me. This leaves me with the freedom to come up with my own theories. *grin*

On the surface, this installation is all about an outdoor concert performed for the residents of an old apartment building.

Strings by Cica Ghost (moderate)

The characters you’ll encounter are fascinating. It’s not possible to tell in a photograph of course, but they move much like any audience does.

There are subtle shifts in body position, eyes blink, heads turn, hands adjust…

Strings by Cica Ghost (moderate)

Somehow their personalities are revealed, even with the smallest of cues. I have to admit the wardrobes are fabulous!

I think, however, that strings has two meanings in this instance.

Strings by Cica Ghost (moderate)

You’ll see people on their balconies or looking out of their windows. If you go inside this old building you’ll find out more about their lives.

Specifically – their family ties. From a man waiting for his wife to come back and play chess, to a small girl drinking from a large cup at the dinner table.

Strings by Cica Ghost (moderate)

In addition to the concert and its participants/audience, Cica has created a stunning landscape where you can, if you wish, listen to your own music.

This is a beautiful snapshot of a moment in the lives of a group of people. Go see Strings – even if you don’t sense any other meanings.

Strings by Cica Ghost (moderate)
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