Aram Bartholl
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Second City
Ars Electronica 2007

"Blumberg vs.Amagatana" 1min: YouTube
"L$, New Berlin in trouble" 1min: Youtube


Shopping Panels, design Marienstrasse



"Missing Image"

"Are you social?"


Second City Shop

Workshop area

"WoW" workshop

"Export to World" workshop by Linda Kostowski & Sascha Pohflepp

"Create and trade" workshop

"Handmade" workshop

"Cut and paste" workshop


Paricipants (from l. to r.): Eva & Franco Mattes (Artist, IT/US) a.k.a. 0100101110101101.ORG, Drew Harry (Sociable Media Group, MIT Medialab, US), Aram Bartoll (Artist, DE), Moderator, Robin Harper (Vice-president of Lindenlab, Community Development, US), Andreas Lange (Scientist, Computergame museum Berlin, DE)

More Second Life projects at Second City

"Synthetic performances" by Eva & Franco Mattes aka 0100101110101101.ORG

"Übermsch / Become your avatar" by Joachim Stein

"Stiff peoples league" by Drew Harry and Dietmar Offenhuber.

Trans Reality Video Conference Phone Booth" by Peter Harlander

"Second Krebs" Party at Roter Krebs, picture by armin r

Thanks to everybody! (see credits)

A major part of the Ars Electronica festival 2007 took place in outdoor public space in the center of Linz, Austria. The so called "Second City" part of the festival was situated in a deserted shopping street between other festival places like Ok-Center, the conference Forum and Pfarrplatz. The festival management rented all empty shops of Marienstrasse and turned 3/4 of the street into an exhibition space. More than 60 pieces of a wide range of international artists were shown at Second City.

Besides the over all topic "Good by Privacy" Second Life and metaverses were a sub topic of Ars Electronica 2007. The festival management was interested in showing a physical representation of the virtual world in Marienstrasse, Linz. Since I have been working in this field of transforming virtual into physical objects Ars Electronica comissioned me to make a design for Marienstrasse, to show a range of my works and to invite other artists in collaboration all related to the topic Second Life.

In an ironic exaggerated way the design of Marienstrasse picked up the main reason for Second Lifes success: money and shopping. In a typical akward Second Life style big shopping panels and default wood cubes were scattered along street. Visitors could choose objects from these billboards and order them at the Second City Shop. "Buy a new pair of eyes or a nice taint for your skin." The Second City Shop was the center of Second Life Marienstrasse. Virtual objects were delivered by the real life clerk, a physical lasered shape of the virtual object served as a receipt and represented the "real" object in Second Life. Visitors could later show each other what they got for their avatars and exchange these objects. What is more important the virtual item or the real object?

Beside serveral pieces and presentations (e.g. "Synthetic Performances" by Eva & Franco Mattes) five different workshops were offered at the Second City Shop: "Create and trade", "Export to world", "WoW", "Handmade" and "Cut and paste" allowed to im- and export objects in all kinds of ways from the virtual world Second Life.

For more detailed information please read the catalogue pages on Second City

All projects of Second City Ars Electronica.

The solo pieces I did show at Second City and at Second City Shop were:

- "Chat", the real life interactive speech bubbles as a mobile installation / performance. (premiere)

- "Tree", four life size semi transparent Second Life trees on a construction site in Marienstrasse. (premiere)

- "Missing Image", the graphical error message from Second Life as a real life shirt. (premiere)

- "Are you social?", T-shirts related to the topic of privacy and Web2.0 services. (premiere)

- "WoW", an ongoing workshop for all visitors to build their real life nicknames (small letters version to be carried on the head)

Artists I invited for collaboration and to show their Second Life related projects within Second City:

- Eva & Franco Mattes a.k.a. with their "synthetic performances".

- Linda Kostowski & Sascha Pohflepp
with there project "Export to World".

- Joachim Stein with his piece "Übermensch / Become your Avatar"

- Andreas Lange from Computergame Museum Berlin was asked to give a talk on Metaverse history.

- The workshop support team and Second Life experts were: Jan Northoff from NewBerlin, Jürgen Höbarth, Tobias Leingruber also know for his Timemachine and Martin Bauer who brought his Lasercutter to AEC.

- The Marienstrassen shopping panels where designed by Jan Northoff NewBerlin, Dörte Küttler Enter the Metaverse and myself

More Second Life and Metavers related projects invited by the festival:

- Joichi Ito with a text in the catalogue "Experience of World of Warcraft."

- Stephan Doesinger hosting the jury for the Second Life architecture competition "Bastard Spaces". Jury members: Shumon Basar,Tor Lindstrand, Michael Schirmer, Pascal Schöning, Mathieu Wellner.

- Drew Harry and Dietmar Offenhuber from MIT Sociable Media Group showed "Stiff peoples league" real life/Second Life soccer table.

- Peter Harlander a.k.a. Ice Staberry with "Second Promotion" and "Trans Reality Video Conference Phone Booth".

- Ars Electronica Futurelab did show the
"Second Life experience" a stereoscopic VR client and developed and realised the Second Life Beach on Pfarrplatz.

- Institut für Erweiterte Kunst
"Second Krebs" at Roter Krebs

Panels and Talks about Second Life / Metaverses during Ars Electronica 07

Panel Sa. 8.9.07, 7 p.m. at Kunstuniversität Linz / K2 (Audimax)

"Everything you ever wanted to know about Second Life" about the impact of Second Life onto future developments of digital communities.

- Robin Harper (Vice-president of Lindenlab, Community Development, US),
- Aram Bartoll (Artist, DE),
- Drew Harry (Sociable Media Group, MIT Medialab, US),
- Andreas Lange (Scientist, DE)
- Eva & Franco Mattes (Artist, IT/US) a.k.a. 0100101110101101.ORG

Panel discussion at Mobiles Ö1-Atelier / Hauptplatz, Linz

Fr 7.9.07, 6 pm
"Public Space - Virtual Space", How does digital media / virtual worlds affect public city space and architecture?

- Mirjam Struppek (Urban Media Researcher, DE)
- Tor Lindstrand (Production of Architecture, SE)
- Stephan Dösinger (Concept Architect, DE)
- Aram Bartholl (Artist, DE)

More pictures in my flickr sets:

- 2nd City
- Chat
- Tree
- WoW


Thanks to all involved artists: Eva & Franco Mattes, Linda Kostowski & Sascha Pohflepp, Joachim Stein

Thanks to the panelists: Eva & Franco Mattes, Robin Linden, Andreas Lange, Drew Harry, Tor Lindstrand, Stephan Doesinger, Mirjam Struppek.

Thanks to my great Second City support and workshop team: Peter Harlander, Jan Northoff, Tobias Leingruber, Jürgen Höbarth, Martin Bauer (who brought his Lasercutter to AEC),

Thanks to my wonderfull workshop girls helping 8h per day building almost 1000 WoW names with vistors: Birgit and others

Thanks to the AEC production team: Martin Honzik (festival manager), Carola Unterberger Probst (project manager of whole Marienstrasse) and Dietrich Killer (exhibition architect) among others.

Thanks to Futurelab for tech support and to Roland Haring for Chat programmin

Thanks to all infoguides, helping hands and to the AEC support team.

Aram Bartholl 2008

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