Hamlet posted an excellent video of the virtual homage to the Burning Man festival called "Burning Life" in Second Life. Obviously a lot of work by hundreds of builders went into creating the fanciful dreamscapes, strange contraptions and just random silliness. It was like a sandbox with lots of lots of very talented kids building the craziest castles you’ve ever seen.
Of all the creations I’ve visited, I have to say that I was most impressed by the 9/11-themed "Paranoia/Watching the Sky for Planes" build by Nebulosus Severine (Krigo 160, 224, 0).
While in an earlier post I worried about the rumor that someone was
planning to re-create the 9/11 attacks in Second Life on the fifth
anniversary, I must admit that what Nebulosus built was actually
thoughtfully done and even somewhat cathartic for me. In the most disturbing part of her build, you are teleported up to top of a hellish depiction of two towers afire that seem to rise into infinity. A kind of collective nightmare that you can imagine Americans everywhere experiencing.
In another part of the build, you are invited to "obsess" on a coach as airplanes circle ominously overhead and oil wells burn behind you.
Meanwhile a TV shows George Bush talking about "freedom," or "allies," or "getting the job done," with subtitles in Arabic. You take another drag from the cigarette placed thoughtfully in the ash tray beside you. Giant newspapers nearby remind you that "We Are at War."
I feel like I am walking around inside of Nebulosus’s stressed and fearful mental landscape. It’s oddly comforting to know that someone has created a 3D environment that expresses the raw terror, the numbing anxiety, the helplessness I and surely many other feel living in the times we live. By walking around inside it, it’s like you are able to navigate it, to not let it master you, and even… to teleport away from it.
Someone who builds a space that can make me feel that way deserves thanks and recognition. Thank you, Nebulosus Severine, whoever you are.
Burning Life 2006 goes bye-bye forever tomorrow! So drop in for a last second look before it’s all just a distant memory.