the first incarnation of an island in Second Life…
Syncretia, an island located in the virtual world of Second Life®, comprises a series of narrative/play installations, which can also be considered as “artistic environments”. Thus, the architecture of Syncretia should be seen as an endeavor for providing a context for play, storytelling and metaphor.
Thus, some of what can be experienced and seen at Syncretia has been added into the environment by friends and such additions have been kept in situ since the island is considered to be a living warm entity that welcomes such interventions. Not an artistic object to be examined as one such, but instead an immersive location for a “Second Life” to fully be lived and participated in. Following up on the theme of the integration of objects created by others, metanomic activity is also brought into play through the integration of objects both found and purchased in Second Life. Thus, Syncretia can also be viewed as a virtual experiment in objet trouvé or readymade art.
A concerned effort has been made by to integrate Syncretia both with the geography as well as the climate of Second Life. Thus, the island has not been conceived of as an artistic abstraction, superimposed in defiance of the virtual terrain upon which it has been rezzed but instead very much as a natural extension of the virtual geography itself. Terraforming, which can be considered as the virtual re-incarnation of Land Art, constitutes the primary tool of a building system which attempts to take advantage of vertical space through the usage of geographical strata. While a considerable part of Syncretia is submerged under the ocean of Second Life, much else makes usage of a steep central mountain as a structural backbone into which huge cantilevered platforms have been embedded, raising some parts of Syncretia high above water levels. There are 4 distinct domains, defined by compass directions, although thought has been given to creating transitional spaces between these as well. Climate is brought into play whereby these domains have their intrinsic climactic properties, created through the implementation of various scripted weather systems.