Has it been a success? I think so, and in three key areas.
First, numbers. All records for visitor numbers to the sim – and for listeners to the music stream – were broken during the course of the evening (European time), and it seems to have been an extremely busy night.
I spent several hours at the sim and it was full or very close to full for most of that time.
For anyone who was trying to get in for a quiet moment or two … sorry about that, but normal service will be resumed in due course.
Second, the experience. Moon and I had worked hard to make this an immersive show. Besides the music and lighting, the idea behind ‘projecting’ the images onto the building walls was to create a collective experience of art: a bit like the cinema, but while looking at pictures instead.
Not only the pictures in the slide show, but the four animated gifs on the hotel rooms behind. Like this one:
Watching pictures together, waiting the (carefully selected) 45 second period for the introductory slide for each image to clear … waiting and anticipating, together … has a strangely hypnotic effect.
There were some moments that really felt quite special.
I recommend reading this excellent piece by Kate Bergdorf, for a description of how this felt from her perspective.
Third, the concept. I wanted to show art not only at Furillen but of Furillen. Art that belongs at the sim because it was made at the sim.
I wanted to offer an alternative to a gallery, using other aspects of what I felt Second Life could offer.
I wanted to show pictures in a way that emphasized what art stands for at Furillen, its sense of community and co-operation.
Moon’s wonderful pictures were the perfect vehicle for this, and I am very grateful to him for agreeing to what must have seemed – at first – to be a bit of a strange idea.
Fortunately, Moon knows enough about Walter Benjamin – who, unashamedly, was my inspiration for this project – to have agreed to come along for the ride.
Without Moon’s excellent portraits – all of them made at Furillen in the same room using the same set – this show could never have worked.
So, to repeat …
Just see it.