Sunday, August 31, 2008


Wow! Crazy but awesome day -- the ORIENTATION event was a bit chaotic but overall amazing! If you missed it, you should kick yourself because it was fucking fun as hell! Haha!


The build comes down September 1st but I will pack it away carefully for another time. Arahan & I look forward to having another opportunity to host the build/event again elsewhere.

See the rest of the pictures here (more to be added soon):

Read about the mixed-reality event in Amsterdam here:

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Paranoia/Watching The Sky For Planes re-worked for Arthole Season 2

Since Level One of Arthole is meant for showcasing some of our older work, I decided to refresh the build (or aspects of it, anyway) that I did for Burning Life 2006 called 'Paranoia/Watching The Sky For Planes.' I just hope I can finish it in time for the opening on Sunday! Haha.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Busy busy weekend for Arthole!

Lotta stuff going on for Arahan & me over the next few days:


SATURDAY August 30, 2008 -- 4 pm til 4:30 pm SLT/PST

Arahan Claveau and Nebulosus Severine will be hosting a live performance entitled "ORIENTATION" for the event Club Goodbye Dollar. This is a cross-reality event; the performances in Second Life will be broadcast simultaneously in a cinema in Amsterdam and also via live audio and video streams on the web at: + +
and inworld on Second Life virtual videoscreens.

Other live performances include the Shamanes, The Avatar Orchestra Metaverse, Second Front, d-oo-b, DFM RTV INT, Lauren Weyland, Akrazul Boa and Amari Soyinka.

Full details on the debalie cinema website -


SUNDAY August 31, 2008 -- 1 pm SLT/PST onward

On Sunday 31st August from 1.00PM SLT/PST Arthole reopens to reveal the new Season 2 work. The three levels in the gallery will feature -

LEVEL 1 WEST WING - PARANOIA, Watching the Skies for Planes - New version of Burning Life 2006 installation by Nebulosus Severine.

LEVEL 1 EAST WING - Injustice - An extended chance to see this work by Arahan Claveau, originally part of his super fun happy club and The Love That Dare Not Speak its Name for KunstVlaii.

LEVEL 2 - XXX PRIVATE SHOW - Arahan Claveau & Nebulosus Severine have together created a disorienting, unsettling environment, incorporating audio and video into the experience.

LEVEL 3 - systems of reference - The smart talent of Selavy takes over Level 3 from Ichibot Nishi and begins residence as our new guest artist for Season 2.


See you over the weekend!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

I'll ALWAYS be a fucking outsider.

The Outsider
by H.P. Lovecraft

Unhappy is he to whom the memories of childhood bring only fear and sadness. Wretched is he who looks back upon lone hours in vast and dismal chambers with brown hangings and maddening rows of antique books, or upon awed watches in twilight groves of grotesque, gigantic, and vine-encumbered trees that silently wave twisted branches far aloft. Such a lot the gods gave to me - to me, the dazed, the disappointed; the barren, the broken. And yet I am strangely content and cling desperately to those sere memories, when my mind momentarily threatens to reach beyond to the other.

I know not where I was born, save that the castle was infinitely old and infinitely horrible, full of dark passages and having high ceilings where the eye could find only cobwebs and shadows. The stones in the crumbling corridors seemed always hideously damp, and there was an accursed smell everywhere, as of the piled-up corpses of dead generations. It was never light, so that I used sometimes to light candles and gaze steadily at them for relief, nor was there any sun outdoors, since the terrible trees grew high above the topmost accessible tower. There was one black tower which reached above the trees into the unknown outer sky, but that was partly ruined and could not be ascended save by a well-nigh impossible climb up the sheer wall, stone by stone.

I must have lived years in this place, but I cannot measure the time. Beings must have cared for my needs, yet I cannot recall any person except myself, or anything alive but the noiseless rats and bats and spiders. I think that whoever nursed me must have been shockingly aged, since my first conception of a living person was that of somebody mockingly like myself, yet distorted, shrivelled, and decaying like the castle. To me there was nothing grotesque in the bones and skeletons that strewed some of the stone crypts deep down among the foundations. I fantastically associated these things with everyday events, and thought them more natural than the coloured pictures of living beings which I found in many of the mouldy books. From such books I learned all that I know. No teacher urged or guided me, and I do not recall hearing any human voice in all those years - not even my own; for although I had read of speech, I had never thought to try to speak aloud. My aspect was a matter equally unthought of, for there were no mirrors in the castle, and I merely regarded myself by instinct as akin to the youthful figures I saw drawn and painted in the books. I felt conscious of youth because I remembered so little.

Outside, across the putrid moat and under the dark mute trees, I would often lie and dream for hours about what I read in the books; and would longingly picture myself amidst gay crowds in the sunny world beyond the endless forests. Once I tried to escape from the forest, but as I went farther from the castle the shade grew denser and the air more filled with brooding fear; so that I ran frantically back lest I lose my way in a labyrinth of nighted silence.

So through endless twilights I dreamed and waited, though I knew not what I waited for. Then in the shadowy solitude my longing for light grew so frantic that I could rest no more, and I lifted entreating hands to the single black ruined tower that reached above the forest into the unknown outer sky. And at last I resolved to scale that tower, fall though I might; since it were better to glimpse the sky and perish, than to live without ever beholding day.

In the dank twilight I climbed the worn and aged stone stairs till I reached the level where they ceased, and thereafter clung perilously to small footholds leading upward. Ghastly and terrible was that dead, stairless cylinder of rock; black, ruined, and deserted, and sinister with startled bats whose wings made no noise. But more ghastly and terrible still was the slowness of my progress; for climb as I might, the darkness overhead grew no thinner, and a new chill as of haunted and venerable mould assailed me. I shivered as I wondered why I did not reach the light, and would have looked down had I dared. I fancied that night had come suddenly upon me, and vainly groped with one free hand for a window embrasure, that I might peer out and above, and try to judge the height I had once attained.

All at once, after an infinity of awesome, sightless, crawling up that concave and desperate precipice, I felt my head touch a solid thing, and I knew I must have gained the roof, or at least some kind of floor. In the darkness I raised my free hand and tested the barrier, finding it stone and immovable. Then came a deadly circuit of the tower, clinging to whatever holds the slimy wall could give; till finally my testing hand found the barrier yielding, and I turned upward again, pushing the slab or door with my head as I used both hands in my fearful ascent. There was no light revealed above, and as my hands went higher I knew that my climb was for the nonce ended; since the slab was the trapdoor of an aperture leading to a level stone surface of greater circumference than the lower tower, no doubt the floor of some lofty and capacious observation chamber. I crawled through carefully, and tried to prevent the heavy slab from falling back into place, but failed in the latter attempt. As I lay exhausted on the stone floor I heard the eerie echoes of its fall, hoped when necessary to pry it up again.

Believing I was now at prodigious height, far above the accursed branches of the wood, I dragged myself up from the floor and fumbled about for windows, that I might look for the first time upon the sky, and the moon and stars of which I had read. But on every hand I was disappointed; since all that I found were vast shelves of marble, bearing odious oblong boxes of disturbing size. More and more I reflected, and wondered what hoary secrets might abide in this high apartment so many aeons cut off from the castle below. Then unexpectedly my hands came upon a doorway, where hung a portal of stone, rough with strange chiselling. Trying it, I found it locked; but with a supreme burst of strength I overcame all obstacles and dragged it open inward. As I did so there came to me the purest ecstasy I have ever known; for shining tranquilly through an ornate grating of iron, and down a short stone passageway of steps that ascended from the newly found doorway, was the radiant full moon, which I had never before seen save in dreams and in vague visions I dared not call memories.

Fancying now that I had attained the very pinnacle of the castle, I commenced to rush up the few steps beyond the door; but the sudden veiling of the moon by a cloud caused me to stumble, and I felt my way more slowly in the dark. It was still very dark when I reached the grating - which I tried carefully and found unlocked, but which I did not open for fear of falling from the amazing height to which I had climbed. Then the moon came out.

Most demoniacal of all shocks is that of the abysmally unexpected and grotesquely unbelievable. Nothing I had before undergone could compare in terror with what I now saw; with the bizarre marvels that sight implied. The sight itself was as simple as it was stupefying, for it was merely this: instead of a dizzying prospect of treetops seen from a lofty eminence, there stretched around me on the level through the grating nothing less than the solid ground, decked and diversified by marble slabs and columns, and overshadowed by an ancient stone church, whose ruined spire gleamed spectrally in the moonlight.

Half unconscious, I opened the grating and staggered out upon the white gravel path that stretched away in two directions. My mind, stunned and chaotic as it was, still held the frantic craving for light; and not even the fantastic wonder which had happened could stay my course. I neither knew nor cared whether my experience was insanity, dreaming, or magic; but was determined to gaze on brilliance and gaiety at any cost. I knew not who I was or what I was, or what my surroundings might be; though as I continued to stumble along I became conscious of a kind of fearsome latent memory that made my progress not wholly fortuitous. I passed under an arch out of that region of slabs and columns, and wandered through the open country; sometimes following the visible road, but sometimes leaving it curiously to tread across meadows where only occasional ruins bespoke the ancient presence of a forgotten road. Once I swam across a swift river where crumbling, mossy masonry told of a bridge long vanished.

Over two hours must have passed before I reached what seemed to be my goal, a venerable ivied castle in a thickly wooded park, maddeningly familiar, yet full of perplexing strangeness to me. I saw that the moat was filled in, and that some of the well-known towers were demolished, whilst new wings existed to confuse the beholder. But what I observed with chief interest and delight were the open windows - gorgeously ablaze with light and sending forth sound of the gayest revelry. Advancing to one of these I looked in and saw an oddly dressed company indeed; making merry, and speaking brightly to one another. I had never, seemingly, heard human speech before and could guess only vaguely what was said. Some of the faces seemed to hold expressions that brought up incredibly remote recollections, others were utterly alien.

I now stepped through the low window into the brilliantly lighted room, stepping as I did so from my single bright moment of hope to my blackest convulsion of despair and realization. The nightmare was quick to come, for as I entered, there occurred immediately one of the most terrifying demonstrations I had ever conceived. Scarcely had I crossed the sill when there descended upon the whole company a sudden and unheralded fear of hideous intensity, distorting every face and evoking the most horrible screams from nearly every throat. Flight was universal, and in the clamour and panic several fell in a swoon and were dragged away by their madly fleeing companions. Many covered their eyes with their hands, and plunged blindly and awkwardly in their race to escape, overturning furniture and stumbling against the walls before they managed to reach one of the many doors.

The cries were shocking; and as I stood in the brilliant apartment alone and dazed, listening to their vanishing echoes, I trembled at the thought of what might be lurking near me unseen. At a casual inspection the room seemed deserted, but when I moved towards one of the alcoves I thought I detected a presence there - a hint of motion beyond the golden-arched doorway leading to another and somewhat similar room. As I approached the arch I began to perceive the presence more clearly; and then, with the first and last sound I ever uttered - a ghastly ululation that revolted me almost as poignantly as its noxious cause - I beheld in full, frightful vividness the inconceivable, indescribable, and unmentionable monstrosity which had by its simple appearance changed a merry company to a herd of delirious fugitives.

I cannot even hint what it was like, for it was a compound of all that is unclean, uncanny, unwelcome, abnormal, and detestable. It was the ghoulish shade of decay, antiquity, and dissolution; the putrid, dripping eidolon of unwholesome revelation, the awful baring of that which the merciful earth should always hide. God knows it was not of this world - or no longer of this world - yet to my horror I saw in its eaten-away and bone-revealing outlines a leering, abhorrent travesty on the human shape; and in its mouldy, disintegrating apparel an unspeakable quality that chilled me even more.

I was almost paralysed, but not too much so to make a feeble effort towards flight; a backward stumble which failed to break the spell in which the nameless, voiceless monster held me. My eyes bewitched by the glassy orbs which stared loathsomely into them, refused to close; though they were mercifully blurred, and showed the terrible object but indistinctly after the first shock. I tried to raise my hand to shut out the sight, yet so stunned were my nerves that my arm could not fully obey my will. The attempt, however, was enough to disturb my balance; so that I had to stagger forward several steps to avoid falling. As I did so I became suddenly and agonizingly aware of the nearness of the carrion thing, whose hideous hollow breathing I half fancied I could hear. Nearly mad, I found myself yet able to throw out a hand to ward off the foetid apparition which pressed so close; when in one cataclysmic second of cosmic nightmarishness and hellish accident my fingers touched the rotting outstretched paw of the monster beneath the golden arch.

I did not shriek, but all the fiendish ghouls that ride the nightwind shrieked for me as in that same second there crashed down upon my mind a single fleeting avalanche of soul-annihilating memory. I knew in that second all that had been; I remembered beyond the frightful castle and the trees, and recognized the altered edifice in which I now stood; I recognized, most terrible of all, the unholy abomination that stood leering before me as I withdrew my sullied fingers from its own.

But in the cosmos there is balm as well as bitterness, and that balm is nepenthe. In the supreme horror of that second I forgot what had horrified me, and the burst of black memory vanished in a chaos of echoing images. In a dream I fled from that haunted and accursed pile, and ran swiftly and silently in the moonlight. When I returned to the churchyard place of marble and went down the steps I found the stone trap-door immovable; but I was not sorry, for I had hated the antique castle and the trees. Now I ride with the mocking and friendly ghouls on the night-wind, and play by day amongst the catacombs of Nephren-Ka in the sealed and unknown valley of Hadoth by the Nile. I know that light is not for me, save that of the moon over the rock tombs of Neb, nor any gaiety save the unnamed feasts of Nitokris beneath the Great Pyramid; yet in my new wildness and freedom I almost welcome the bitterness of alienage.

For although nepenthe has calmed me, I know always that I am an outsider; a stranger in this century and among those who are still men. This I have known ever since I stretched out my fingers to the abomination within that great gilded frame; stretched out my fingers and touched a cold and unyielding surface of polished glass.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Some of my artwork featured in recent machinima

"Chasm" featured in this machinima by Ravenelle Zugzwang:

"Just Fucking Die Already" in this machinima by Penumbra Carter:

Thanks, Ravenelle and Penumbra! :)

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Want to read: 'Sway'

Sway: The Irresistible Pull of Irrational Behavior
by Ori Brafman & Rom Brafman

(Thanks to Zofia for the tip!)

Article: Ten paradoxical traits of the creative personality.

(All of the following excerpts were taken from the article "The Creative Personality" by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi. My thoughts/comments about the posted excerpts are italicized in brackets. The article can be read in its entirety here:

Here are the 10 antithetical traits often present in creative people that are integrated with each other in a dialectical tension.

1. Creative people have a great deal of physical energy, but they're also often quiet and at rest...The important thing is that they control their energy; it's not ruled by the calendar, the dock, an external schedule. When necessary, they can focus it like a laser beam; when not, creative types immediately recharge their batteries. They consider the rhythm of activity followed by idleness or reflection very important for the success of their work...
[Absolutely true for me -- 'focus like a laser beam' is a very accurate analogy for it. And I DEFINITELY need that idle time to recharge. A casual observer might mistake it for laziness, but intense focusing like that does take a LOT out of me.]

2. Creative people tend to be smart yet naive at the same time...Another way of expressing this dialectic is the contrasting poles of wisdom and childishness. As Howard Gardner remarked in his study of the major creative geniuses of this century, a certain immaturity, both emotional and mental, can go hand in hand with deepest insights. Mozart comes immediately to mind...
[Wisdom and childishness... haha. Yep, I can identify with this, too.]

3. Creative people combine playfulness and discipline, or responsibility and irresponsibility. There is no question that a playfully light attitude is typical of creative individuals. But this playfulness doesn't go very far without its antithesis, a quality of doggedness, endurance, perseverance...
[This one and #2 are pretty closely related -- kinda ties the first two together, actually. I am typically very laid-back and childish, I goof off and stuff, but I am dead fucking serious when it comes down to working on creative projects.]
...Despite the carefree air that many creative people affect, most of them work late into the night and persist when less driven individuals would not...
[I can't count the number of nights I have spent working for hours at a time until I am ready to drop dead from exhaustion, and even then, I won't go to sleep til I finish what I'm working on.]
4. Creative people alternate between imagination and fantasy, and a rooted sense of reality...But the whole point of art and science is to go beyond what we now consider real and create a new reality. At the same time, this "escape" is not into a never-never land. What makes a novel idea creative is that once we see it, sooner or later we recognize that, strange as it is, it is true...
[Part of an artist's gift, I think, is the ability to connect imagination/fantasy to reality in a way that makes sense to a more general audience.]

5. Creative people trend to be both extroverted and introverted...In fact, in current psychological research, extroversion and introversion are considered the most stable personality traits that differentiate people from each other and that can be reliably measured. Creative individuals, on the other hand, seem to exhibit both traits simultaneously.
[FUCK YES -- this is very, very much me. I didn't figure I was the only one like this or anything, but I had no idea this was actually a common trait of artistic people. Wow.]

6. Creative people are humble and proud at the same time...Their respect for the area in which they work makes them aware of the long line of previous contributions to it, putting their own in perspective...
[Yes, definitely.]
...And they're usually so focused on future projects and current challenges that past accomplishments, no matter how outstanding, are no longer very interesting to them.
[Yes, DEFINITELY. I am usually bored with something the moment I finish it, haha.]
...At the same time, they know that in comparison with others, they have accomplished a great deal. And this knowledge provides a sense of security, even pride.
[Indeed. While I feel DO feel pretty non-egotistically proud about all the things I have accomplished, and though I DO appreciate positive feedback about my work, I STILL have trouble accepting compliments. Part of me loves that time in the spotlight, part of me feels totally under-the-microscope and almost squirmy uncomfortable.]

7. Creative people, to an extent, escape rigid gender role stereotyping... psychological androgyny is a much wider concept referring to a person's ability to be at the same time aggressive and nurturant, sensitive and rigid, dominant and submissive, regardless of gender. A psychologically androgynous person in effect doubles his or her repertoire of responses. Creative individuals are more likely to have not only the strengths of their own gender but those of the other one, too.
[YES, absolutely YES. I have felt psychologically androgynous since I was a child; I was very much aware of it for about as long as I can remember.]

8. Creative people are both rebellious and conservative. It is impossible to be creative without having first internalized an area of culture.
[Besides, you have to know the rules before you can break 'em. :P]

9. Most creative people are very passionate about their work, yet they can be extremely objective about it as well. Without the passion, we soon lose interest in a difficult task. Yet without being objective about it, our work is not very good and lacks credibility.
[Of course passion is essential to art, but in order to be a serious artist, one MUST be able to accept criticism - which is where the objective part comes in; one should always try to see the work from an outside perspective. Positive AND negative feedback about one's work is part of what helps one to evolve and improve, and to be an artist -- and indeed, an intelligent being -- is to NEVER stop evolving, in my opinion.]

10. Creative people's openness and sensitivity often exposes them to suffering and pain, yet also to a great deal of enjoyment.
["The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain." -- Khalil Gibran]
...Divergent thinking is often perceived as deviant by the majority, and so the creative person may feel isolated and misunderstood.
[Story of my fucking life!]
...Perhaps the most difficult thing for creative individuals to bear is the sense of loss and emptiness they experience when, for some reason, they cannot work. This is especially painful when a person feels his or her creativity drying out.
["You do not know how paralyzing that staring at a blank canvas is; it says to the painter, You can't do anything." - Vincent Van Gogh, Letter #378 (to his brother Theo), October 1884]
...Yet when a person is working in the area of his of her expertise, worries and cares fall away, replaced by a sense of bliss. Perhaps the most important quality, the one that is most consistently present in all creative individuals, is the ability to enjoy the process of creation for its own sake.
[And it really IS bliss. I swear to christ, if I didn't have art, I'd be fucking dead. Creating art is literally what keeps me alive sometimes. Art is my god.]

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Last chance to see 'The Cult(ure) of Television'

I will be taking down my Level 1 installation, 'The Cult(ure) of Television' on Saturday, August 23. Friday, August 22 will be the last chance to see it.

After this date, my Level 1 side of the gallery will remain closed until August 31 so that I can prepare for Arthole Season 2.


Monday, August 11, 2008

Day trip: Overpriced & underwhelming.

I've got the week off from work, so my roommate & I decided we wanted to take a bunch of day trips. Today we went to Boston to check out the aquarium. I hadn't been there since I was a kid and she had never been. The day turned out to be pretty mediocre. Bleh.

The weather was a bit crappy -- nice and mild, but rainy. We got a little lost on the way to Boston, but fortunately not too bad. We parked in a nearby garage and as we approached the aquarium, we noticed that the line to get in... stretched ALLLLLLL the way across the courtyard, out to the street, wrapped partly around the sidewalk outside the garage.

So, yeah. A word of advice: don't attempt to check out the museums in Boston in the summertime when it's rainy out and everyone's "stay-cationing." Holy fuck.

Roommie & I had to pee anyway so we made a pit stop and then debated what the hell to do next; we weren't sure if we wanted to bother with the aquarium or not. So we walked around Quincy Market for a little while and figured maybe the crowds might thin out...? They didn't, but we decided to just suck it up and wait in that ridiculously long line anyway.

Quincy Market florist - Boston, MA

It "only" took about an hour to get into the damn place, so it wasn't as bad as we feared, despite the rain and everything. We got free entertainment for the duration -- the college kids behind us in line were STRAIGHT out of one of those "Sully and Denise" skits on Saturday Night Live -- fucking hilarious! They were the EPITOME of the stereotypical "Boston teens."

So we finally got in to the aquarium, and had a look around, and it wasn't anything special. We were both pretty disappointed. Quite honestly, I enjoyed my 2006 trip to the Mystic Aquarium a LOT more.


Jellies - New England Aquarium, Boston, MA

Whale skeleton - New England Aquarium, Boston, MA

Not to mention that... THERE WERE JUST TOO MANY PEOPLE. The huge crowds made it really stressful, & really difficult to see anything. We decided to get a snack & have a rest at the cafe there and the food there was WAY overpriced. We enjoyed the mural on the wall more than we enjoyed our snack. :P

Cafe mural - New England Aquarium, Boston, MA

After we had seen everything, we wanted dinner so we walked across the wharf to a restaurant called the Chart House. Our meal was pretty decent but nothing amazing. By that point, I think we both were too tired and worn out to enjoy it. The seating arrangements weren't ideal, either -- WAY too close to the party next to us. Ugh.

Dinner at the Chart House - Boston, MA

Fortunately, we found our way out of town with no problem. God, I'm exhausted. I haven't been up during the day, for an entire day, in months.

Today's tally:

Half a tank of gas - roughly $20
Aquarium admission for 2 - $40
Snack from aquarium cafe - $15
Parking garage - $34 (!)
Dinner - $85
Knowing that it's totally not worth it to do THAT again -- Priceless. ;P

Interesting shit about the nature of intelligence

[ All of this material was found on ]

from what is intelligence? (longer definition)
Ultimately, all intelligence is systemic since the OUTPUT of each PROCESS becomes the INPUT into other processes.

* Learning is the transformation of information (input) into knowledge useful for predicting future events (output)
* Knowledge = information + transformation (imagination, reasoning and idiosyncratic construction of meaning, relevance and value).
* Technology is the application of knowledge to the environment
* Innovation is the process of introducing new technology into an environment for use by others.
* Creativity is the application of imagination to produce something new.
* Reasoning is the systematic process of comparing facts (differences in information) to reach conclusions (motives, decisions, convictions).

Given these definitions, learning, knowledge, reasoning, imagination, creativity, innovation, fun, evolution and technology are subprocesses of intelligence.

from other definitions of intelligence
Ray Kurzweil (19??- ): Intelligence is "the ability to use optimally limited resources, including time, to achieve a set of goals (which may include survival, communication, solving problems, recognizing patterns, performing skills). The products of intelligence may be clever, ingenious, insightful, or elegant."

from six ways to increase intelligence
* Increase the diversity of input (varieties of sensory perceptions)
* Increase the diversity of transformations (multiple meanings / interpreations / metaphors)
* Increase the diversity of output (expression / application)
* Improve the conditions of the physical support systems (body, environment)
* Remove or reduce the environmental factors which inhibit intelligence (labels, bureaucracies, etc.)
* Increase the environmental factors which support intelligence (trust, communities, unpredictability, communication technologies, etc.)

Bureaucracies are designed to reduce intelligence by limiting information (input) and conditioning pre-defined interpretations of value, authority and procedures (transformations) while increasing obedience and efficiency (output).

from some definitions re: RESTRAINT of intelligence
maturity n. The state or quality of being fully grown or developed.

My observations re: immaturity -- "immature" is so often regarded to have negative connotations. But what is so bad about constantly being in a state of growth and development? I'll be immature forever, thank you very much.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

'Chasm' recorded live on

AnthonyFontana Chevalier sent me a message through Facebook just this morning telling me that he had taken some live video at 'Chasm':

Thanks, AnthonyFontana!

Hmm, no shit -- "Biological basis for creativity linked to mental illness" (article)

Interesting article I stumbled upon:

Biological basis for creativity linked to mental illness

Creative people more open to stimuli from environment

Psychologists from U of T and Harvard University have identified one of the biological bases of creativity.

The study in the September issue of the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology says the brains of creative people appear to be more open to incoming stimuli from the surrounding environment. Other people's brains might shut out this same information through a process called "latent inhibition" - defined as an animal's unconscious capacity to ignore stimuli that experience has shown are irrelevant to its needs. Through psychological testing, the researchers showed that creative individuals are much more likely to have low levels of latent inhibition.

"This means that creative individuals remain in contact with the extra information constantly streaming in from the environment," says co-author and U of T psychology professor Jordan Peterson. "The normal person classifies an object, and then forgets about it, even though that object is much more complex and interesting than he or she thinks. The creative person, by contrast, is always open to new possibilities."

Previously, scientists have associated failure to screen out stimuli with psychosis. However, Peterson and his co-researchers - lead author and psychology lecturer Shelley Carson of Harvard University's Faculty of Arts and Sciences and Harvard PhD candidate Daniel Higgins - hypothesized that it might also contribute to original thinking, especially when combined with high IQ. They administered tests of latent inhibition to Harvard undergraduates. Those classified as eminent creative achievers - participants under age 21 who reported unusually high scores in a single area of creative achievement - were seven times more likely to have low latent inhibition scores.

The authors hypothesize that latent inhibition may be positive when combined with high intelligence and good working memory - the capacity to think about many things at once - but negative otherwise. Peterson states: "If you are open to new information, new ideas, you better be able to intelligently and carefully edit and choose. If you have 50 ideas, only two or three are likely to be good. You have to be able to discriminate or you'll get swamped."

"Scientists have wondered for a long time why madness and creativity seem linked," says Carson. "It appears likely that low levels of latent inhibition and exceptional flexibility in thought might predispose to mental illness under some conditions and to creative accomplishment under others."

For example, during the early stages of diseases such as schizophrenia, which are often accompanied by feelings of deep insight, mystical knowledge and religious experience, chemical changes take place in which latent inhibition disappears.

"We are very excited by the results of these studies," says Peterson. "It appears that we have not only identified one of the biological bases of creativity but have moved towards cracking an age-old mystery: the relationship between genius, madness and the doors of perception."

[ Source: ]

'Chasm' installation - see it while you can!

An installation by Nebulosus Severine
Cow sim
July/August 2008

"No matter how much you think you love someone or trust someone, know this:
Between you and everyone else on this planet there is a dark, infinite chasm that can never be crossed."
-- Oswald T. Pratt, You Are Worthless

Before you explore the sim, there are some specific instructions for optimal viewing. They may seem complicated, but I assure you, they are simpler than they first appear and completely worth the effort.

Additionally, I suggest that you visit and explore the sim alone.


1.) Enable music streaming and turn on your music.

2.) Turn your draw distance to maximum.
(Edit - Preferences - Graphics - Check the "custom" box if it is not already - Draw Distance: 512)

3.) Download and install the following Windlight settings.
Download the zip file here --
Instructions for installation:
Unzip the files (if you don't have Winrar, you can download that for free here -- and extract them to the following locations:
Dark%20Water.xml -- C:\Program Files\SecondLife\app_settings\windlight\water
Shine%20Modified.xml -- C:\Program Files\SecondLife\app_settings\windlight\skies
---FOR MAC OS X---
Unzip the files (if you don't have UnRarX, you can download that for free here -- and extract them.
Go to your Applications folder and right-click on the version of Second Life you're running. Select 'Show Package Contents.'
It should open a new window with a folder called 'Contents' -- open that folder, then within it open 'Resources', then within that open 'app_settings', then within that open 'windlight.'
In the 'windlight' folder drag the files to these subfolders:
Dark%20Water.xml -- Resources/app_settings/windlight/water
Shine%20Modified.xml -- Resources/app_settings/windlight/skies

4.) Restart Second Life to see the new Windlight settings. Then, in the 'World' menu, select 'Environment Editor.' Press the 'Advanced Sky' button and choose 'Shine Modified' from the list. Press the 'Advanced Water' menu and choose 'Dark Water.'
[You can reset the skies/water at any time by choosing a different Windlight setting or by reverting to region default under 'Environment Settings.']

5.) Exploring the sim:
If you do not have a flight assist, you will need to wear a Flight Feather to explore. A free one is provided at the entrance to the sim.

There are two major structures in the sim; you can fly up and through them. Also, you will quickly notice that there is only one way to get from one side of the sim to the other (if you pay attention to details you will figure it out). At water level, you will find the Lost Souls.


Special thanks to:
-- Dirkthecow Writer and HERD for the use of their sim
-- Bettina Tizzy of NPIRL for making this possible
-- sp00ky Graves for help with textures, particles, and for general inspiration
-- Sean Clancy for help with the Mac OS X Windlight instruction settings
-- SomaFM for the 'Doomed' channel
-- All my visitors and supporters!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Jewelry I made

'Swan's Tears' set

Okay, this post is really overdue. A few weeks ago I collaborated with Callie Cline & made the jewelry & prim eyes for the dress/ensemble she designed for the Black Swan fashion show.

It's available for purchase here, but only for another day or so (then I'll be moving it):

Callie's blog has an article about it here:

Also, I just found out last night that Callie was featured in a real-life print magazine from Cypress; there are several pictures of her & in one of them she's wearing the Swan Song outfit plus the jewelry I made -- wow! So one of my creations is in print in a real magazine, that's crazy! Callie's blog mentions it here:

The article doesn't mention my name but that's okay; I'll make it into another magazine article someday, maybe!

Swan Song & Swan's Tears in RL print magazine

Windlight preset installation for Mac users!

I met a helpful person named Sean Clancy today at 'Chasm' and he was able to figure out how to install the Chasm Windlight presets for Mac OS X! I know several people have been asking me how to do it, and now I can finally pass that information along!

---FOR MAC OS X---
Download the zip file here --

1.) Unzip the files (if you don't have UnRarX, you can download that for free here -- and extract them.

2.) Go to your Applications folder and right-click on the version of Second Life you're running. Select 'Show Package Contents.'

It should open a new window with a folder called 'Contents' -- open that folder, then within it open 'Resources', then within that open 'app_settings', then within that open 'windlight.'

In the 'windlight' folder drag the files to these subfolders:
Dark%20Water.xml -- Resources/app_settings/windlight/water
Shine%20Modified.xml -- Resources/app_settings/windlight/skies

3.) To see the new Windlight settings, you must restart Second Life. Then, in the 'World' menu, select 'Environment Editor.' Press the 'Advanced Sky' button and choose 'Shine Modified' from the list. Press the 'Advanced Water' menu and choose 'Dark Water.'

You can reset the skies/water at any time by choosing a different Windlight setting or by reverting to region default under 'Environment Settings.'

The original Windlight installation post is here:


Sunday, August 3, 2008

What gives??

I have attempted to take some snapshots to disk of my most recent artwork at Brooklyn Is Watching and no matter what I do, the picture looks dark and dull.

To test it, I uploaded a snapshot & then did a "save texture as" just to see if the same thing happened, but the uploaded pic looks okay -- SO WHY DOESN'T SAVING A SNAPSHOT TO DISK LOOK RIGHT!?

It's just something to do with this piece, I think, but I can't figure out what the hell it is. I've taken other snapshots to disk and they seem to look fine... bah!!!!!

* Edit: I have taken a few more snapshots to disk to test things, and it seems that anything with Glow on it is not showing up. I have no idea how to fix that... bah!!!!!!!!!!!

Poem (devastating)

A Lesson In Drawing

My son places his paint box in front of me

and asks me to draw a bird for him.

Into the color gray I dip the brush

and draw a square with locks and bars.

Astonishment fills his eyes:

"... But this is a prision, Father,

Don't you know, how to draw a bird?"

And I tell him: "Son, forgive me.

I've forgotten the shapes of birds."


My son puts the drawing book in front of me

and asks me to draw a wheatstalk.

I hold the pen

and draw a gun.

My son mocks my ignorance,


"Don't you know, Father, the difference between a

wheatstalk and a gun?"

I tell him, "Son,

once I used to know the shapes of wheatstalks

the shape of the loaf

the shape of the rose

But in this hardened time

the trees of the forest have joined

the militia men

and the rose wears dull fatigues

In this time of armed wheatstalks

armed birds

armed culture

and armed religion

you can't buy a loaf

without finding a gun inside

you can't pluck a rose in the field

without its raising its thorns in your face

you can't buy a book

that doesn't explode between your fingers."


My son sits at the edge of my bed

and asks me to recite a poem,

A tear falls from my eyes onto the pillow.

My son licks it up, astonished, saying:

"But this is a tear, father, not a poem!"

And I tell him:

"When you grow up, my son,

and read the diwan of Arabic poetry

you'll discover that the word and the tear are twins

and the Arabic poem

is no more than a tear wept by writing fingers."


My son lays down his pens, his crayon box in

front of me

and asks me to draw a homeland for him.

The brush trembles in my hands

and I sink, weeping.

-- Nizar Qabbani


Saturday, August 2, 2008

More machinima - 'So Flows the Current'

My installation 'So Flows the Current' has been on the back burner for a long time, but it's open for viewing at Depot 7, please pay a visit:

Picture & a new machinima:

So Flows the Current

If you cannot see the above video, please follow this link:

Friday, August 1, 2008


"Emotions are dumb and should be hated."
-- Bender (Futurama)

Chasm - sim project - update #4

I have added some new elements to the sim, the 'Lost Souls.' If you are at water level, you will notice them.

(A big thanks to sp00ky Graves for help with the particles, etc)

Chasm - Lost Soul

For previous updates, please read here, here, and here.

More soon!!