Yúcale: an arts community in Second Life

Yúcale; Inara Pey, May 2019, on FlickrYúcale – click any image for full size

Update: Yúcale has closed, and the host parcel is now home to the OHM Valley hangout).

Saturday, May 4th, 2019 saw the grand opening – in fact the official return – of a base of operations for the Yúcale project and community in Second Life, Originally called the Yúcale Café Gallery (the name by which it is still known on Facebook), the project has a long history, as founder Samiraa Adderstein informed me during the second of two visits at the weekend.

Yúcale started in December 2014, we ran from then until June 2018, when I had a half years break from SL due to RL stuff. I started with a 300 LI parcel back then, and we’ve grown a lot since then, and actually moved three times!  We also had some smaller events before the official re-opening, and a benefit for Feed A Smile.

– Samiraa Adderstein founder of the Yúcale Coffee Gallery

Yúcale; Inara Pey, May 2019, on FlickrYúcale

Now called Yúcale Giramondi Virtlantis, the new location for Yúcale covers just under 1/3 of a Full region, and has been designed by Samiraa  – Samum to her friends – with the support of Pater Bac (Bacoo Balut) to be a place for mixed arts: exhibitions by photographers and painters (which will change bimonthly), together with readings by authors, music events. It is also a place where people can – as the About Land description notes, “meet every now and then to play games, listen to radio plays or watch movies together”.

We used to be the Yúcale Coffee Gallery, but I changed the name this time, because Kip Boahn of the Virtlantis language project sponsored us for almost a year, and it is a way for us to say “thank you”. Also, Giramondi was a small café in my home town that ran events like we do here. It has now sadly closed, but I wanted to remember it in our name.

 – Samiraa Adderstein explaining the name change

Yúcale; Inara Pey, May 2019, on FlickrYúcale

The new design for the community has a pleasantly Mediterranean feel to it. With a southern aspect and shoulder to the west and east by high cliffs, there is an intimate village feel to the location. With moorings down at the water’s edge connected by path and steps to the village above, it’s easy to imagine coming across it whilst sailing along the coast of Italy or Spain, and deciding to come alongside and enjoy an exploratory stroll up to the village square.

For the official opening, Yúcale features art by Belice Benoir, Jaëlle Faerye, Xirana Oximoxi, Balbera Resident and Samiraa herself. Individual exhibitions are located in different buildings both in the village and the parcel as a whole – Jaëlle’s work is displayed within the out warehouse in the south-west corner of the region overlooking the southern moorings and outside of the village, while Belice’s art can be found up in the little chapel looking down on village from a perch on the eastern highlands.

Yúcale; Inara Pey, May 2019, on FlickrYúcale – Balbera Resident

Yúcale is less a place than an idea. We do cooperative events quite often. On Sunday May 12th we have Sunday Lounge, a travelling event if you like. And As May 25th is International Towel Day, we’ll be holding an event to honour Douglas Adams with author readings, etc.

– Samiraa Adderstein

Scattered around and between the art locations are various venues for music – notably the village square and the circus tent down close to the waterfront, while some of the gallery spaces are large enough to accommodate music and dancing during openings. A restaurant / bar sits to one side of the village square, while a little book store (still being finalised at the time of our visits) pays homage to Yúcale’s café origins. In the unlikely event you have problems finding your way around, major venues within the location are linked via a teleport system as well.

Yúcale; Inara Pey, May 2019, on FlickrYúcale

Details of events at Yúcale are published via the Yúcale Café Gallery public Facebook page, the in-world .::Yúcale::. (subscribers at the location), and via a Flickr group. A new in-world publication has also been started, again available from Yúcale.

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Detectives, mages, kaleidoscopes and cave girls

Seanchai Library

It’s time to highlight another week of storytelling in Voice by the staff and volunteers at the Seanchai Library. As always, all times SLT, and events are held at the Library’s home at Holly Kai Park, unless otherwise indicated.

Sunday, May 5th,

13:30: Tea-Time at Baker Street

Caledonia Skytower, Savannah Blindside and Kayden Oconnell once again open the pages of The Casebook of Sherlock Holmes, the final set of twelve Sherlock Holmes short stories first published in the Strand Magazine in 1922.

This week: The Problem of Thor Bridge.

“The faculty of deduction is certainly contagious, Watson,” Holmes informs his good friend John Watnson one October morning after Watson had arrived for breakfast expecting to find Holmes in a depressed mood, wanting for a good, solid case, but finding him instead practically full of the joys of spring.

The comment comes in response to Watson’s observation that such a good mood could only mean that Holmes did indeed have a case. Even so, it is not until after breakfast that the Great Detective reveals the situation.

“You have heard of Neil Gibson, the Gold King?” he said.

“You mean the American Senator?”

“Well, he was once Senator for some Western state, but is better known as the greatest gold-mining magnate in the world.”

“Yes, I know of him. He has surely lived in England for some time. His name is very familiar.”

“Yes, he bought a considerable estate in Hampshire some five years ago. Possibly you have already heard of the tragic end of his wife?”

“Of course. I remember it now. That is why the name is familiar. But I really know nothing of the details.”

The details are that the wife of the aforementioned J. Neil Gibson had been most cruelly murdered by none other than the family’s governess, Grace Dunbar. The evidence in the case couldn’t be more clear, nor Miss Dunbar’s guilt more sure.

So the letter Holmes reveals to Watson he has received, and which protests Miss Dunbar’s innocence despite all the evidence indicating otherwise, is not only responsible for his upbeat mood, but also sets the Great detective a pretty riddle. Particularly as it has been written by none other than J. Neil Gibson himself …

18:00 Magicland Storytime

Caledonia begins Ian Flemming’s classic children’s tale Chitty-Chitty-Bang-Bang: the Magical Car from the Golden Horseshoe.

Monday, May 6th 19:00: Paper Mage

Gyro Muggins reads Leah R. Cutter’s 2003 début novel.

Set in the Tang Dynasty of the Middle Kingdom (about the time of Charlemagne in Europe), the novel tells us of the adventures of Xiao Yen, a young woman training to become a paper mage, a sorcerer with the power to endow folded creations with the semblance of life.

Because her gifts are in demand for the protection they can offer, Xiao Yen must leave behind her beloved family and their village home and embark on a dangerous mission when she is hired to protect a caravan. Yet even as she departs, she has no idea that this looming adventure will shape the very woman she is to become.

The story follows two time lines, alternating chapters between the caravan journey, where one of her fellow travellers is a goddess who charges her with a dangerous quest, and the story of her childhood training, when she lay caught between her aunt’s plans and her mother’s plans to have her married off.

Tuesday, May 7th  19:00: Kaleidoscope

When a brilliant young violinist dies in a horrific accident, Madame Karitska has only to hold the victim’s instrument in her hands to perceive the shocking truth. But when an insecure wife asks whether her husband will abandon her to join a sinister cult, Madame Karitska–as wise as she is lovely–chooses not to reveal all that she foresees. And when an attaché case is suddenly dropped into her lap by a man fleeing a crowded subway, she knows it’s time to consult her good friend Detective-Lieutenant Pruden.

A nine-year-old accused of murder, a man dying a slow death by witchcraft– for the hunted and the haunted, Madame Karitska’s shabby down-town apartment becomes a haven, where brilliant patterns of violence, greed, passion, and strange obsessions mix and disintegrate with stunning, kaleidoscopic beauty.

With Caledonia Skytower.

Wednesday, May 8th 19:00: Meet Midsummer

With Aoife Lorefield at LEA 2.

Thursday, May 9th 19:00: Edgar Rice Burroughs’ Cave Girl

Waldo Emerson Smith-Jones was not overly courageous. He had been reared among surroundings of culture plus and ultra-intellectuality in the exclusive Back Bay home of his ancestors. He had been taught to look with contempt upon all that savoured of muscular superiority, such things were gross, brutal, primitive. It had been a giant intellect only that he had craved, he and a fond mother, and their wishes had been fulfilled. At twenty-one Waldo was an animated encyclopaedia, and about as muscular as a real one.

And so we are introduced to Mr. Smith-Jones, the unlikely hero of this novel, set within Burroughs’ Lost World series. Swept overboard during a during a South Seas voyage intended to ease his ill-health, Waldo finds himself carried ashore on a primitive jungle island, where all his book learning can’t help him survive, particularly in the face of the terrifying ape-like throwbacks to mankind’s early evolutionary history who live on the island, and from whom he continually flees.

And then he encounters – rescues, even, albeit mistakenly – Nadara, the titular cave girl. Regarding him a hero, she teaches him the arts of survival and her primitive language, taking him back to her tribe – who turn out to be Palaeolithic cave people. If he is to stay among them, Waldo must prove his worth by fighting the strongest. He opts to flee instead.

However, as he spend more time in the jungle, gaining in strength thanks to Nadara’s teachings, he finds himself unable to put her out of his mind. So much so that when a ship finds the island, he refuses passage aboard her. Instead, more sure of himself than at any point in his life, he sets out to find the cave girl who believes he saved her.

With Shandon Loring. (Also in Kitely grid.kitely.com:8002:SEANCHAI).