UWA Art of the Artists: machinima challenge – update

Poster by Eliza Wierwright

In July I was able to break the news that the University of Western Australia would be retaining a presence in Second Life, and that in recognition of this, was launching a special UWA machinima challenge, Art of the Artists, sponsored by LaPiscean Liberty of SLArtist and Singh Albatros and The Writers Centre, Singapore. On offer is a combined prize pool of L$350,000, including two special prizes.

The closing date from entries is December 31st, 2017, and videos for the competition are being hosted at the SLArtist website. Given there is just over a month to go before submissions close, I thought I’d take a look at some of the entries to date – with no personal preference implied – and run through a reminder of the main elements of the contest. However, as the SLArtist website utilises raw tags (which are considered a no-no by Automattic on WordPress.com hosted blogs), I’m embedding the videos as uploaded by the artists to YouTube.

Isabelle Cheren’s Before The World Was Made, featuring the work of artists Noke Yuitza, Otcoc Resident & Phillysmaybe Resident, Peli Dieterle, Igor Ballyhoo, and Rosie Dimanovic

In short, entrants may choose individual pieces of art or a collection around which to weave a story. However, the art must be a relatively significant part of the story, and not merely something glimpsed in passing, and films to be considered for any of the prizes must not be any longer than 8 minutes in duration (longer films can be submitted but will not be eligible for any of the prizes).

Selected art for a film may be filmed in its current location. however, films do not need to be restricted to these locations, as long as the art is the focus of the story being told. Entrants may contact artists about filming their works in other locations and / or collaborating with them on a film.

Joseph Nussbaum’s Alcyon and Ceyx featuring the artwork “A Virtual Wander in Two Dimensions and a Half” by ErikoLeo

The prizes run from L$75,000 for the first prize, through to five prizes of L$7,000 each for the films judged in 6th through 10th positions. In Addition, there are two special prizes:

  • L$50,000 UWA Art of the Artists Special Prize: this will be awarded by Jayjay Zifanwe on behalf of the University of Western Australia
  • L$50,000 The Merlion Special Prize: this will be awarded by Singh Albatros on behalf of The Writer’s Centre, Singapore to the film which – in the view of the judge –  best represents the The Merlion,  the national personification of Singapore.

The 10 main prize winners will be selected by a selected panel of judges. Details of the full panel will be available on the UWA website soon. Each of the special prize winners will be judged independently to the judging panel, and as such, may be eligible for a prize in the general classification as well.

Bryn Oh’s Cerulean featuring the artist’s own work “The Cerulean”

Art which can be used in films submitted to the Challenge can be found in the following locations:

  • The UWA Main Gallery – the primary exhibition space for art at UWA, including entrants to the most recent challenge, Transformations, which is expected to remain up at least through the end of this year.
  • The UWA Main region – this is the home of the iconic Winthrop Hall clock tower, Somerville outdoor cinema, the Moreton Bay Figs, and Sunken Garden. Some of the art from the UWA regions which will be closing will be relocated to platforms above this region. The relocation work is expected to be completed by the end of July 2017.
  • The Merlion – celebrating Singapore’s iconic Merlion sculpture, the full-sized version is hosted by the Monash University in Second Life. The smaller version at te UWA offers information on Merlion Portal Project concerning cultural, literary and artistic significance of the Merlion. It also provides a landmark to the full size installation.

Gerhard Helmut’s 3rd Eye Open. Artworks featured are “The Pineal Gland” by artist Ub Yifu, “He Holds Her Heart” by LunaEnigma – Luna Cobain, “Skeleton” by JointVenture Resident and “The Merlion” by Rebecca Bashly.

Additional Requirements:

  • Completed films should be uploaded, preferably YouTube or Vimeo, and a link to the film sent to  Jayjay Zifanwe and LaPiscean Liberty.
  • Entries should acknowledge all art featured and acknowledge / have the authorisation for any music used.
  • Rights to all films should be held by the creator, but by entering the challenge permission is given for films to be shown on the UWA Blog, the Slartist Website and to be played on UWA lands.
  • The ten winners of the general prizes will be adjudicated by a panel of 5 judges. The special prize winners will be selected by Jayjay Zifanwe (UWA Special Prize) and Singh Albatros (The Writer’s Centre prize).
  • If you have questions, want to discuss anything, or add to the prize pool,  please contact Jayjay Zifanwe.

Suzie Anderton (Inworld Films) Never Say Never, featuring the prize-winning installation by Sharni Azalee.

For full details on the contest, please refer to the original UWA blog post.



Previewing the Dickens Project 2017 in Second Life

The Dickens Project 2017 Edition

In 2012, and to mark Dickens Bicentenary Year. Seanchai Library created The Dickens Project, a celebration of the life and times of Charles Dickens, focused around what is perhaps his most popular novel – and one which still resonates with meaning today – A Christmas Carol. Since then the event has evolved and grown over the years, in the process becoming a Second Life Tradition.

In 2017, to mark the its fifth anniversary, The Dickens Project will open its doors on Saturday, November 25th, 2017, and run through until Saturday, December 30th, 2017 in a region-wide immersive environment, where visitors can trace Ebenezer Scrooge’s journey, from his place of business, to his home, and onward through his travels with the Ghosts of Christmas to the end of his story. There are also numerous opportunities to learn more about Charles Dickens, his works, the popularity of A Christmas Carol down through the years and – of course – hear the story itself through a series of readings by the Seanchai Library and friends.

The Dickens Project 2017 Edition: A famous place of business

However, there will also be so much more going on over the course of the five weeks, with weekly DJ sessions, stage performances by Guerilla Burlesque, and Misfit Dance & Performance Art, and tours of the experience. For those who prefer to ride rather than walk, there is a carriage ride around the region, pulled by a magnificent shire horse, and balloon rides for a heady Victorian experience in what is designed to be an inspirational build evoking the spirit of A Christmas Carol.

“Every year we learn something new,” said Seanchai Lead Caledonia Skytower in reference to the event, “Something fresh from the text, and something new in how we present it. Our vision has always been to guide our audiences ‘in the steps of Ebenezer Scrooge’ using Dickens words framed by a themed environment, like walking through a live picture book.”

The Dickens Project 2017 Edition

The 2017 Edition will include multiple presentations of A Christmas Carol in a variety of adaptations, in sections and in its entirety, and at different times to make the live readings accessible to residents from different parts of the globe. Other works from within the author’s vast canon are featured in the weeks leading up to “Carol Week” (Monday December 11th, through to Sunday December 17th), which climaxes in a marathon “Big Read” presentation of A Christmas Carol performed by a relay team of Seanchai staff and storytelling friends, scheduled for Sunday, December 17th. There is also an interactive information centre on the times and work of Charles Dickens, designed by the Community Virtual Library.

In 1843 Charles Dickens prefaced his about-to-be classic tale with these words: “I have endeavoured in this Ghostly little book, to raise the Ghost of an Idea, which shall not put my readers out of humour with themselves, with each other, with the season, or with me. May it haunt their houses pleasantly, and no one wish to lay it.” He began the novella in October, completed it in less than six weeks. It went on to become the most successful book of the 1843 holiday season, selling six thousand copies by Christmas and continuing to be popular into the new year.

The Dickens Project 2017 Edition: Christmas Present

The Dickens Project SL is free to attend and explore. The twice daily readings are designed to help reach as wide an SL audience as possible, and will be presented by different volunteers, each giving his or her interpretation of the story and the characters, and visitors are welcome to attend as many readings as they wish.

For full details of the schedule of events for The Dickens Project, please refer to the Seanchai Library blog. In the meantime, I’m reproducing the outlines summary as it stood at the time of writing this preview.

November 2017

  • Saturday, November 25th: Opening Day.
  • Sunday, November 26th:
    • 13:00 – Tea Time with Charles Dickens.
    • 14:00-16:00 – Dancing in “Christmas Past” with DJ Dano Bookmite.

December 2017

  • Friday, December 1st, 20:00: Guerilla Burlesque Show in Dickens Square*
  • Sunday December 3rd:
    • 11:00 – Wald Schridde Live at the Docks – Sea Shanties.
    • 12:00 – ACRL Virtual World Interest Group Tour.
    • 13:00 – Tea Time with Charles Dickens.
    • 14:00-16:00 – Dancing in “Christmas Present” with DJ Dano Bookmite.
  • Tuesday, December 5th,  12:00 noon – Russell Eponym – Music Poetry, and Stories.
  • Friday, December 8th:
    • 09:00 – The NonProfit Commons Group Tour of the Dickens Resource Centre.
    • 20:00 – Guerilla Burlesque Show in Dickens Square*.
  • Sunday, December 10th, 13:00:  Tea Time with Charles Dickens.

Carol Week, December 11th-17th

  • Monday, December 11th, 14:00 and 19:00: Stave One: Marley’s Ghost.
  • Tuesday, December 12th, 14:00 and 19:00: Stave Two: The First of Three Ghosts.
  • Wednesday, December 13th, 14:00 and 19:00: Stave Three: The Second of Three Ghosts.
  • Thursday,  December 14th, 14:00 and 19:00: Stave Four: The Last of the Spirits.
  • Friday, December 15th:
    • 15:00 – 90 Minute A Christmas Carol
    • 19:00 – Misfit Dance & Performance Art*
  • Saturday, December 16th:
    • 12:00 Noon – Misfit Dance & Performance Art*
    • 14:00-16:00 – Fezziwig’s Ball in “Christmas Past” With DJ Dano Bookmite.
  • Sunday, December 17th:
    • 11:00 – Wald Schridde live in Dickens Square.
    • 12:00-15:30 – The Big Read in Dickens Square.

Christmas Week

  • Wednesday, December 20th, 19:00: Community Virtual Library Tour
  • Friday, December 22nd, 12:00 Noon: 90 Minute A Christmas Carol Story Tour
  • Thursday, December 30th – CLOSING DAY:
    • 13:00 – Josie Anderton, LIVE
    • 14:00-16:00 – The Last Dance with DJ Gabrielle Riel
    • 20:00 – Guerilla Burlesque Show in Dickens Square*

* For these large stage performances, please arrive early to grab a seat and let your cache  load.  Music will be playing for your enjoyment during these pre-show times.

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