Monday, January 9, 2017


A place where visitors can sit in comfort while conversing, or simply taking in the view.
You can also sit on the counters, and there are cupcakes for the sweet tooth.

     Recruiting a little house into an extreme remodel which enlarged it significantly, the Captain’s Cabin becomes the third corner of a usable triangle of buildings at Venice Under Glass. Earlier visitors might remember that at first, this network of canals was arranged as a set design, with only one focal building containing an interior: the Orange Gallery. The next to come was the Peace Gallery to house images of Lilia Artis’ exhibit “The Cruelty of Peace”. In order to balance the habitable space, I began work the past week on the café now called the Captain’s Cabin.

These three walls were only one hollowed out prim.

Molding was added at the floor and ceiling, and the alpha texture for walls
was removed. The pillars and arches are prims with non-alpha textures.

     The two pictures above show the progress of the build. Thank goodness for the alpha wars inherent in transparent textures. It was for this reason that I didn’t settle for the first draft of the walls. The building’s upper exterior gave precedence to the alpha glass floor above it, rendering the typical ghost effect. Though this kind of blending is often desired, in this case I felt it weakened the overall look of the building. I took a deep breath and decided to spend the extra prims necessary to construct non-alpha walls. Going from one prim to about 20 is the result. That wasn’t so painful after all thanks to the savings with convex hulling.

     To acquire an Italian look, I take inspiration from Loggias. If you notice the pillars, they are a device to call on classical architecture, and are actually photos I took of an iron building in New York. It seemed to fit the bill, though a continent away. The wide open arches on three sides allow an extraordinary amount of light to engulf the interior, and afford the opportunity for a panorama looking out. The Captain’s Cabin is one among the choice spots for a view at Accentaury, so the generous windows were essential.

The counters are arranged as an oval, to suggest the shape of a ship.

     Venice Under Glass is not a copy of its namesake in any manner. No buildings are copied from the real life city. It is simply a fantasy adaptation, yet still has the gondolas and poles to show for it. However, Venice, whether in real life or in a virtual world, is indebted to its glass. Wanting to include this aspect, I sculpted some glass pieces which are given for free to visitors when they click on them. I might make variations in the near future so anyone who wants can build up a collection. 

There was a wall of rock facing this doorway. Yesterday I removed it,
and just by chance, the view looks onto the shipwreck, which has
been a part of ACC Alpha since its early days. It was not
touched to accommodate the view, it remains steadfast.


Monday, January 2, 2017

The Peace Gallery

     The Peace Gallery is part of the Studio of Builds Museum. It is composed of ‘canals’ in an area called Venice Under Glass. Navigating the little gallery islands makes it a fun way to experience the art displays. The Peace Gallery takes its name from the recent full sim exhibit Lilia Artis build on LEA6. I took photos around her installation “The Cruelty of Peace”, placing them on the walls of this small gallery. Over the past couple days, I reworked the façade, until it reached its current melty appearance. Undoubtedly, there will still be refinements applied to the architecture over time, but the photos here show its progress. These melting walls are similar in style to the architecture right overhead on the Paper Tower Court.

     Lilia’s “Cruelty of Peace” came down on December 31, 2016. But both she and I will preserve it to the best of our abilities in a film to come out in the near future. I’ll announce the film when it is finished. 


Saturday, December 31, 2016

Colorful 2016, and Welcome to 2017

Looking onto Venice Under Glass

    To celebrate the year 2016, ACC Alpha has had quite a number of recent changes, and BIG ones which you can read about in recent posts. Refinements continue to be underway, most evident at the sea level of the Studio of Builds arena (right beneath Paper Tower Court). This ancient aquarium from 2010 has been remodeled to fit a small town, warmly referred to by the residents as "Venice Under Glass". It is part of the expansive Studio of Builds museum, and if you fall into the water and sink to the bottom of the sea, you will find yourself in yet another museum gallery called The Dead Mariner's Treasury.

Garden below painting of dancer by Tishati.

Artwork by Ziki Questi at the Orange Gallery.

     Various artists' works can be seen in the arena area, including Tishati's painting of a dancer at the garden. There is an exhibit of Ziki Questi's work in the Orange Gallery in Venice Under Glass, as well as a special exhibit dedicated to "Cruelty of Peace" by Lilia Artis. These pictures of her exhibit on the LEA6 sim will come down today at midnight, so I wanted to preserve it in some way on ACC Alpha. If you read this post before the end of the day, there is still time to see Cruelty of Peace. Both Lilia and I are burning the midnight oil to film her creation before it disappears shortly. I will post a link when it is complete. We intend to spend some time in making the movie, reflecting Lilia's philosophy of making everything from scratch. All the terraforming on her LEA6 sim, mesh and textures are by Lilia, and the film will be the music that she and I create also.

Views of "Cruelty of Peace" by Lilia Artis. Still on view at the LEA6 sim
until the end of  the night December 31.

The Peace Gallery seen in the middle of the photo with melting Baroque
facade is where images from Cruelty of Peace are displayed.

     As 2016 is honored at ACC Alpha, so 2017 is welcomed. On Saturday, January 14th at 1 PM SLT, Paradox Messmer will have an opening of his works at the Dead Mariner's Treasury. There will be an announcement prior to the opening with more information.

     Have a wonderful New Year everyone.


Sunday, December 25, 2016

The Brother's Tale: exhibit of Silas Merlin's art.

Silas Merlin presents his first full sim exhibit: "The Brother's Tale". It is only up for a short time, so run to see it by Dec. 27. He had not originally intended to announce it to the public, but I asked if I could make a film and tell a few people. Actually, I was nearly whining. I couldn't imagine keeping this from visitors.

Silas has been altering the land textures and windlight from time to time, so this post captures a slot in time with his exquisite pastel land. The film shows an earlier land texture.

If you are able to visit before the sim comes down, make sure to go inside the ruins and walk over its top. It is not a large structure, but the irregularity of the plan expands the feeling of size, and is laid out for a sense of adventure. The organic layout reminds me in some ways to tide pools. What you find inside is of particular interest. Tic the Advanced Lighting Model in preferences for the full effect of Silas' statues, including the goblet on the table inside the ruins. There is also a page of Silas' story written on a book in that same room.

"The Brother's Tale" is on the Pica Pica sim in Second Life until Dec. 27.


Thursday, December 15, 2016

Lilia Artis' exhibit: "The Cruelty of Peace"

     Until the end of December, Lilia Artis is displaying her build “The Cruelty of Peace” on the LEA 6 sim.

     What may appear as a beautifully tranquil setting upon arrival, The Cruelty of Peace has another tale in store for the visitor. It is not a fairytale, but a harsh reality that millions suffer. In this personal view, Lilia focuses on one family unit. In their tragic fall among the vast landscape, one can imagine the sense of solitude one may feel in the last moments just before war burns life away. This is the palette the artist seems to have chosen, a million souls represented by one family. But Lilia goes yet another step further. 

     In her own words:

     "War just never seems to end. It turned into a background noise while we are having breakfast or dinner and live our everyday lives," says the artist. "The news shows there seems to be no limit to the cruelty of what human beings do to other human beings, to men, women, children. And then there is the ongoing destruction of our environment. Hearing about ever growing pollution, a question rises in my head: what is the reality of peace? Is it only possible when the human race becomes extinct?" 

The Cruelty of Peace will remain on display through the month of December. 


Saturday, December 10, 2016

The Basaltic Herd: A transformed bay at Accentaury.

The field of houses leading up to the Paper Tower Court in the distance.

I recently made a film about the city center discussed in this post. To watch, please click here.


     The land rumbled. Buildings and trees shook. All around, living beings held their breaths, was it an earthquake?
     A fault line has skimmed the ancient Paper Tower area of ACC Alpha since a mishap in Second Life years ago, which returned many residents’ mega prims. The base and ceiling of the arena was one of the victims. Fearing future disasters, the scientists have been squeezing high quality glue into the cracks of the faults. Skeptics challenge its efficacy. Two days ago, an architectural glue was applied: a web of houses now expands over the bay like a binding blanket. The idea of the overlapping, similarly sized houses, comes from a natural formation in Iceland, where one finds basaltic hexagons covering a large area of land. They look like human constructions, but are in fact wholly sculpted by Nature. In the case at Accentaury, the square and rectangular floor plans take precedence over the hexagons for a particular reason; their geometry is easier to read as they overlap one another. And overlapping is key, for this giant bib spanning the bay is indeed a bridge. If the visitor is careful, they may avoid falling through open spaces to the bottom of the bay. For those who do sink to the seafloor, there is plenty to see under the waves.

Looking onto the Basaltic Herd with Medusa Locks in the center and right background.


Looking up, underneath the Basaltic Herd from the seabed.
Most of the so called paper buildings at Accentaury have translucent interiors,
please step inside for some unusual visual views of the city.

Entrance to the remodeled space under the Paper Tower Court. This part of
the museum is under the sea. Its name is "The Dead Mariner's Treasury".

The Dead Mariner's Treasury plans to rotate exhibits every three months. Installed now,
through March 2017 is the portrait work of Paradox Messmer.


"Venice Under Glass"

Lilia visiting the new installation of what used to be the ancient aquarium.
The enormous colonnade called the 'Golden Corridor' dates to 2010.
It is one of the oldest structures on the sim.

Tour the art in Venice Under Glass with the hydrobicycles. Just click to RIDE.
Artworks are generally installed on the outsides of buildings. 

Riding through the canals, this cycling avatar notices the visitor standing
above through the glass ceiling. The standing man is on the Paper Tower Court.

     With the application of the ‘housing glue’, the Paper Tower Court is now more solidly supported. The circular colonnade which forms the lower level has become enclosed to such an extent, as one might call it a cave. The new walls do not shut out the light, to the contrary, the glass bottom floor of the Court allows the sun to illuminate a new scene where the giant aquarium used to be (the ancient sharks now live under the sea). Venice Under Glass is a gallery of canals, as this building which houses it has always been part of the museum. There is a hydro bike which visitors may ride for a slow tour along the canals of the gallery space. If you step off the bike in mid water, you will find yourself sink into yet another gallery beneath the sea. Of course, the city of Accentaury tends to favor layers, so the whole is rather like a labyrinth.

     Crossing over the basaltic inspired housing, flocks of animals cross the bay in large number. 

This first herd of centaurs, a couple deer, and many hares cross the bay carrying
their ship high above the water to prevent it from getting wet. 

They are quick, but sure footed.


Wednesday, November 30, 2016


The new lawn makes the park feel more open, but if you cam beneath the blades
of grass, you will see the original landscaping which endures year after year.

     The old House of Accentaury, established in this building in early 2012, had once been a shop, then a meditation hall, and now a restaurant with the new name: Menagerie Court. Not only was the interior redecorated, but the park which it faces has also been simplified with a wide open lawn. Conforming to the theme of the sim, more animals find their home in this quarter of the city. The restaurant is set up with seven tables so there is plenty of seating for visitors, a stage for entertainment and / or lectures, and even a special soy turkey! When clicking on a chair to sit, the guest will see a menu, for which they can choose a meal. You can find the restaurant at the ACC Alpha sim, on the high plateau in the city.

Dine in comfort, and enjoy the peacock entertainment. You can pet the tigers
at the fountain. Once seated, click your chair for a menu of meals.

     I made a film of Menagerie Court HERE. Many thanks to the people who arrived on the sim to be included in the video. It was a wonderful couple days.