Wednesday, November 28, 2007

The Far Away

Peaceful blowing wheat field, creaking rusting windmill, abandoned train engine, a table set at pause…Am Radio, an artist who works for IBM, designed this environment based on his home scenery of Illinois, in honor of the disappearing farms that he’s been witnessing, as America gives way to the corporate crapscape.

Photographic backdrops of big skies create the feeling of depth, and you feel, as you stand there, that you might be breathing big country air as stalks of wheat tickle your palms. The skies are gray and brooding, anticipating a storm, and you feel the charge of the atmosphere, a bit of mist across the nose…this is a computer simulation, people, but it’s also art.

Radio has taken advantage of the attention he rightly deserves for creating this amazing place to sell replicas of the sim to benefit Heifer International. He’s earned about $500 so far…

I invited my new friend Polo to explore it with me. We released ourselves to an animation that allowed us to blow, turn and be pushed about by the gentle wind created by the windmill. Now and then other visitors would show up…one newbie joined us in the sky and played with his appearance, making himself paunchy and jolly, then studly, then paunchy again as he rolled over the air waves. Another couple disappeared behind the train engine…it’s a romantic spot really. A romantic, forgotten American landscape. And, like most things in sl, embedded with a bit of mystery and humor. We flitted this way and that, Polo in his Baroque suit clothes, me in my bustle, and talked for a long time…

Read more about AM Radio here: