Author Archives: Inara Pey

About Inara Pey

Eclectic virtual world blogger with a focus on Second Life. My blog can be found below and I'm semi-active on Twitter and Plurk.

Caught in Eternal Suspense

The Eternal Suspense, Giovanna Cerise - LEA 21

The Eternal Suspense, Giovanna Cerise – LEA 21

The Eternal Suspense is the title of Giovanna Cercise’s latest full region installation now open at the Linden endowment for the Arts, as a part of the 8th round of the Artist in Residence programme.

A complex piece mixing geometrical forms with human elements, the installation extends several hundred metres into the air, encompassing a number of distinct levels. Within the lattices and sphere which give a sense of order to the the build, there is also an element of disorder: human figures rising from the lowest platform, climbing the lattices upwards into the sky, stretching up towards a white figure crouched at the highest level.

The Eternal Suspense, Giovanna Cerise - LEA 21

The Eternal Suspense, Giovanna Cerise – LEA 21

Giovanna has taken as her theme the Apollonian and Dionysian philosophical dichotomy, perhaps most famously expounded within Friedrich Nietzsche in his 1871 study, The Birth of Tragedy. in which he examines the nature of Greek Tragedy before going on to use the Greek model to understand the state of modern culture.

The central concept of the Apollonian and Dionysian dichotomy is that Apollo is the god of reason and the rational, while Dionysus is the god of the irrational and chaos; therefore the core of all great tragedy grows out of the interplay between the differing world views they represent.

The Eternal Suspense, Giovanna Cerise - LEA 21

The Eternal Suspense, Giovanna Cerise – LEA 21

Within The Eternal Suspense Giovanna embodies and interprets this concept artistically. “Man is poised between two or more emotions, he is always in a delicate step,” she states, “in a hazardous environment. Its location is never easy, he is a tightrope imprisoned in constant tension between his Dionysian side and the Apollonian one. But [do] you have really to choose? Or you have really to find a balance?”

Thus, this interplay is defined between the lattice (ordered and rational) and the mass of figures climbing it (disorder, chaotic). But it also runs deeper. The figures themselves are rising from a scene somewhat chaotic in nature, with what appears to be roiling waves (or perhaps flames) mixed with revelry; but while their ascent up through the lattice may seem chaotic, it is both purposeful (rational) and encompasses cooperation (order), the figures all assisting one another. Thus the tension we can experience in trying to find a balance between our Apollonian and Dionysian “sides” is embodied in their form and efforts.

The Eternal Suspense, Giovanna Cerise - LEA 21

The Eternal Suspense, Giovanna Cerise – LEA 21

To get around the work, you can either fly, or use the teleport spinning tops (the first is located at the landing point). Right click on them and select TELEPORT, and they take you up through each level. Giovanna recommends a sunset windlight for the piece; I’d actually suggest something more towards a dusk level of lighting.

The Eternal Suspense will be open through until the end of June 2015.

2015 viewer release summaries: week 20

Updates for the week ending: Sunday, May 17th, 2015

This summary is published every Monday, and is a list of SL viewer / client releases (official and TPV) made during the previous week. When reading it, please note:

  • It is based on my Current Viewer Releases Page, a list of all Second Life viewers and clients that are in popular use (and of which I am aware), and which are recognised as adhering to the TPV Policy. This page includes comprehensive links to download pages, blog notes, release notes, etc., as well as links to any / all reviews of specific viewers / clients made within this blog
  • By its nature, this summary presented here will always be in arrears, please refer to the Current Viewer Release Page for more up-to-date information.

Official LL Viewers

LL Viewer Resources

Third-party Viewers


  • UKanDo updated on Windows to version Beta on May 11th – core updates: Viewer-Managed Marketplace – release notes


  • Cool VL Viewer Stable branch updated to version, and the Experimental branch to version both on May 16th (release notes)

Mobile / Other Clients

  • No updates.

Additional TPV Resources

Related Links

Nightfall madness, magic from the marsh and a galaxy far, far, away

It’s time to kick-off another week of fabulous story-telling in voice, brought to our virtual lives by the staff and volunteers at the Seanchai Library.

As always, all times SLT, and unless otherwise stated, events will be held on the Seanchai Library’s home on Imagination Island.

Sunday, May 17th, 18:00: The Reluctant Dragon

With Caledonia Skytower at Magicland Park.

Monday May 18th, 19:00: Nightfall

NightfallGyro Muggins opens the pages of Isaac Asimov’s 1941 short story.

Lagash (or Kalgash, in the novel-length version of the story as penned by Asimov and Robert Silverberg) is a planet orbiting a sun in a close-knit cluster of six stars, such that total darkness is almost never known, and the illumination of the six stars is such that it blots out any view of the cosmos beyond the cluster.

It is also a planet with a strange history; just over every 2,000 years, it appears that civilisation collapses in a huge conflagration. But why? Slowly, a number of scientists uncover the truth: once every 2049 another object orbiting Lagash’s primary star causes a total eclipse as see from the surface of the planet, removing much of the planet’s light, and bringing forth a very brief night.

Thus the theory is born that when these eclipses occur, civilisation goes mad, setting fire to almost everything in order to “bring back the light”, destroying itself in the process. With another eclipse approaching, the scientists set about preparing themselves and the people for the coming Nightfall. 

Only when it does come, they discover it is not the darkness which causes madness…

Tuesday May 19th, 19:00: New voices Potpourri

An evening sharing some voices not, perhaps, new to the story floor, and other who are making their debut reading at Seanchai Library tonight. Featuring: Bhelanna Blaze, Arletta Martian, Stranger Nightfire, and Trolley Trollop.

Wednesday May 20th

06:00: Forever Erma

Erma BombeckErma Bombeck achieved great popularity for her newspaper column that described suburban home life from the mid-1960s until the late 1990s. She also published 15 books, most of which became bestsellers. From 1965 to 1996, Erma Bombeck wrote over 4,000 newspaper columns, using broad and sometimes eloquent humour, chronicling the ordinary life of a mid-western suburban housewife. By the 1970s, her columns were read twice-weekly by 30 million readers of the 900 newspapers in the U.S. and Canada

Join Freda Frostbite and Trolly Trollop as the delve into Erma’s wit and wisdom of everyday life.

19:00: Christie’s Detectives

Join Caledonia Skytower as she presents short stories featuring Agatha Christe’s beloved detectives: Parker Pyne, Jane Marple and Hercule Poirot.

Thursday May 21st, 19:00: Marsh Magic

Shandon Loring opens the covers of Silver Birch, Blood Moon, the anthology of fairy tales re-written for an adult audience and this week dips into Marsh-Magic by Robin McKinley. Drawing on the story of Rumplestiltskin.

In a far-away land, a fragile peace is maintained between a kingdom and the magical folk of the marshes he story features a kingdom where peace is maintained by a bargain struck between the king and a tribe of magical people dwelling in the marshes. The bargain means that as each new king comes of age, he will be wed to a bride selected from the marsh people by his royal advisor. To the people of the marsh, the arrangement appears to be increasingly one-sided, so when one of their women is selected for the most recent king, and decides on a subtle form of revenge for all those who had come before her…

Saturday May 23rd, 12:00 Noon, Seanchai Kitely: Star Wars Saturday

So, where were you in 1977?  Do you remember the first time you saw the first film?  The first 25 times you saw the first film?  Maybe you have never seen it at all.  Join Caledonia on Seanchai Library’s Spaceworld to enjoy for the first time (or re-live the joy) of those first adventures from an edition penned by Director George Lucas himself!

With Shandon Loring at Seanchai Kitely ( Eirc).


Please check with the Seanchai Library SL’s blog for updates and for additions or changes to the week’s schedule. The featured charity for April / May is Habitat for Humanity, with a vision of a world where everyone has a decent place to live – a safe and clean place to call home.

Related Links

Space Sunday: sunsets, ring-hunting, airships and to boldly brew

NASA’s Mars Science Laboratory rover Curiosity is continuing onwards and upwards in its ascent of “Mount Sharp”, en route to a feature mission staff have dubbed “Logan Pass”. At the start of May, however, the rover made a slight detour in order to study a small valley of interest to the science team.

In planning the route up to “Logan Pass”, which sits at the head of a series of shallow valleys cut into the side of “Mount Sharp”, the rover was ordered to carry out a panoramic study of the terrain in its vicinity to help with route planning. In doing so, it imaged a small valley cut into one of the uprisings on the mound’s lower slopes, dubbed “Mount Shields”. The valley was of interest as it appeared to have been carved into the rock – possibly by liquid water action – at some point in the past and has since gradually been filled-in.

Gotcha! A view from NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) on April 8th, 2015 (Sol 949 for the rover), reveals Curiosity passing through the valley dubbed “Artist’s Drive” on the lower slope of “Mount Sharp”. The image was captured using MRO’s High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera, and the rover, complete with right-pointing shadow, can be seen in the inscribed rectangle. The view in this image covers an area 500 metres (550 yards) across (click for full size)

This kind of geological feature is called an “incised valley fill”, and it is of interest because the material filling the valley cut is different to the material comprising the bedrock of the mound itself, being mostly sand. Thus the science team wanted to understand more about the possible mechanisms that might have deposited it there. Was it carried by wind or water or a mixture of both? Is there a variation in age between the rock of the mound and the material deposited in the incision? Answering these questions help in better understanding many of the environmental (geological and climatic) changes which have occurred on Mars.

Planning for the rover’s progress up the side of “Mount Sharp” is a complex process, involving multiple teams and consultations, particularly as a balance had to be achieved between reaching potential science targets and avoiding undue wear on the rover’s components and systems. To explain how the rover’s route is planned,NASA JPL recently issues a Curiosity Update video discussing the process.

Following its diversion to examine the incised valley, Curiosity resumed its upward path towards “Logan Pass”. As noted in the video, this is also of particular interest to the science team as it marks the intersection of two geological layers – the “Murray Formation”, which forms the transitional region between the slope of “Mount Sharp” proper and the floor of the Gale Crater basin, and the “washboard” region above it. It’s likely that the rover will spend some time in the “Logan Pass” are, before resuming its climb towards a further site of scientific interest, dubbed “Hematite Ridge”.

Sunset on another world: on April 15th, 2015 (Sol 956 for the rover), Curiosity captured a series of images of a setting sun as to stopped to survey the route towards “Logan Pass”. The images were captured after a dust storm had left a significant amount of particulate matter suspended in the atmosphere. Thus, the individual pictures making up this animated image allow the science team to understand the vertical distribution of dust in the Martian atmosphere and how it might influence regional climatic conditions. The blue tinting to the sky evident around the sun is due to the suspended dust particles being just the right size to allow blue wavelengths to penetrate the atmosphere with a slightly greater efficiency than other wavelengths (click for full size)

 New Horizons turns  Moon Hunter

New Horizons is the name of NASA’s mission to perform a high-speed flyby of the dwarf planetary system of Pluto and Charon. The craft, which achieved the fastest launch of any space vehicle to date, with an initial velocity 16.26 km/s when it lifted off the pad at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on January 19th, 2006, is currently approaching Pluto and Charon at a relative velocity of 13.8 km/s.

Currently, the mission is closing on the period the mission team have dubbed the “seven weeks of suspense” – a reference to Curiosity’s “seven minutes of terror” during the entry, descent an landing phase of that mission – as New Horizons makes its closest flyby of Pluto and Charon, coming to within 10,000 kilometres of the former on July 14th, 2015 and 27,000 kilometres of the latter.

The nuclear-powered (RTG) New Horizons - one of the fastest man-made craft ever made to date, now closing on the Pluto-Charon system

The nuclear-powered (RTG) New Horizons – one of the fastest man-made craft ever made to date, now closing on the Pluto-Charon system

On May 15th, 2015, New Horizons’ ability to image Pluto and Charon exceeded those of the Hubble Space Telescope. While the images are still blurry – but will massively improve – they are enough to start to show surface features on Pluto, including what might be a polar ice cap.

May also saw New Horizons enter a new phase of its mission: the discovery of further moons within the system. While Charon has traditionally been regarded as Pluto’s moon since its discovery in 1978, the relative size of Charon compared to Pluto, and the fact that the barycenter of the Pluto–Charon system lies outside Pluto, technically makes them a binary dwarf planet system, with a number of tiny moons orbiting them both – and there is a chance there may be more such little moons waiting to be discovered.

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