Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Orfeo's Oratorio


"Orfeo's Oratorio"

Date: Sunday the 20th, September

TIme: 1 pm PDT/SLT

Location: Ars Simulacra on the NMC Campus

An Immersive Installation by Alizarin Goldflake

The germ of the idea for Orfeo came into existence in 2001 when I was playing around with my digital drawing "The Very Rich Hours" ("Pink Colonade" in RL; please see The drawing was done with Corel Painter and a Wacom digitizing tablet, and it is 4520 x 6770 pixels.

I had just finished it and for some reason I got the idea to invert it, i.e., turn it into a negative image. One of my friends was very disturbed by the negative, which intrigued me. When I started thinking about my next SL build last December, the idea popped into my head of using that experience to make a mirror environment, and "Orfeo's Oratorio" was launched.

An immersive art environment, it is a virtual amusement park with an Upper World/Under World theme. The centerpiece of the upper level is an other-worldly fountain. Two-person steerable gondolas and 1-person fixed-path coracles play the role of bumper cars. The coracles swing the rider into space outside the build, and the view back in is spectacular. There are dance pose balls and a seating area, "The Circle of Confusion," with a perpetual cocktail party going on. A quote from the end of Dante's "Inferno" periodically drifts up and out through a circular opening in the roof. The floor is of particular interest. Its texture of black and transparent squares creates the illusion of a mirror-like reflection that, along with the columns and arches, lends a Venetian atmosphere. Viewers will also want to notice how the light changes from day to night along the walls.

Two blue-jetted Ferris wheels connect the Upper World to the Underworld, which is an upside down version of the former. Hot oranges and purples replace the cool blue colors of the Upper World, and the Salsa Inferna pose balls dance the avatars on the ceiling. The underworld coracle is ringed with fire, and particle flames shoots up from the floor. A set of flaming sconces lights up either end, and the Underworld version of the fountain hangs from the ceiling, dripping particle sparks like a giant chandelier. Another quote from the Inferno sinks slowly through the floor. And a single Ferris wheel connects the rider to the Outside World, where the view from underneath is also spectacular.

337 prims, 12/24/08 - 5/14/09 (5 months to build!)

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