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The “Plead Guilty” exhibition in the street of Noir Wen City in Second Life

An art exhibition in Second Life

A land owner of Second Life gave me the opportunity to exhibit in his whole land. I publish here one of the text I wrote, inspired by the exhibited paintings .

Noir’Wen City, between Sodom and Jerusalem

Noir’Wen City is the name of the land. It has a high density : density of urban planning, density of shops and the almost suffocating presence of the pleasures of flesh. I thought of Sodom and Gomorrah, the cities of debauchery in the Bible. …

The situation was so dramatic that three sages had asked God for an audience on the first day of summer 2020. It was a strange procession: a mother whale, the oldest elephant and an old oak. Their wisdom was not that of appeased, disenchanted, but that patiently forged of a succession of lives, a first naive life, a second enlightened life, then other lives each deployed, freed from chains and nourished by past lives. It was wisdom in action. …

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A story in three parts about facing our limits

One more step and she would be sentenced to death. At the edge of the Latrabjarg cliff, between heaven and earth, more than four hundred meters above the ocean which was smashing itself against the rocks, surrounded by gulls and puffins howling as if to beg her not to throw herself into the void, she suddenly became aware of the diabolical temptation that attracted her.

In an instant, her body froze, a shiver of terror ran through her belly to the roots of her hair, paralyzing her legs as if they were sinking into the granite. …

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A story in three parts about facing our limits

I held the pale and spotted hand of my grandfather, I could feel that his heart had stopped beating. At that moment, I was ashamed of my hand with its varnished nails, too long and too red. I was ashamed of my absent parents who decided to put my grandfather in the freezer to defer the burial. I was ashamed of this sanitized dying where my grandfather had been languishing for six months, when he would have liked to leave our world in his house, his paradise. I was ashamed of all of us. But he was gone, his face relaxed, white as a sheet, without smiling but without sadness, in the mists of morphine. He left behind his big house, his chaotic garden. He had let go of my hand to cross the border of the unknowable. I cried. I don’t know if it was sadness or happiness. He had left me on this side of the wall, but he had assured me that he would always be here for me, that he would not disappear as long as I thought of him, and that when I no longer thought of him, he would simply be elsewhere. And I believed him. I always believed in what he said to me: that he was Santa Claus’ best friend of and that he met him regularly to drink beer together; that death was nothing, only a change of state, and that he was delighted to discover what was on the other side of the wall; that I was his favorite little girl, just as my big sister was. I will miss his passionate hugs. …

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A story in three parts about facing our limits

Leaving the restaurant that evening, she thought that something was going to go wrong. Perhaps it was the disapproving looks of passers-by for this woman dressed in a man’s suit and stilettos, elegant and tattooed, and visibly drunk. Perhaps it was the color of the night, black and shiny in the cold rain of late autumn.

At thirty three, she was at the head of a growing company, crushing most of its competitors in its meteoric rise. After dinner, exchanging warm handshakes, she had left her collaborators at the table, laptops next to their plates, to finalize the presentation of a project which could represent a significant part of the turnover of her company next year. If they won. Winning. Winning was her reason for living, her dope, her orgasm. She saw herself reinvesting half of her earnings in the business, and splashing the other half in luxury hotels in Bali. That was what made her run. Win, play, replay, enjoy. Win and take. She left behind a fully motivated team. …

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I cannot thank the people who pose for me enough. They agree to lay bare in front of a cold wall, sit on a high chair, and wait. Having myself posed for others, I felt the emptiness in this anti-decor : nothing apart from the presence of my body, nothing to think about, nothing to say, almost nothing to listen to, except the demands of the photographer.

It is in this void that the model occupies their space: shapes, curves, textures, shadows, colors, expressions, movements … The model does not settle in this vacuum, the vacuum is created around them, gradually, like an aurora floods the sky with light in the ink of the night. It can take a long time. And when the silence is almost palpable, and the void is there, and it has imposed itself on the set, and it has interfered in the mind of the model, then something happens unheard, sublime. I just have to change an angle, a pose, a movement. The model is no longer the same, they are more beautiful, more alive, unique. …

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Thanks to the french neuroscientist Lionel Naccache, who inspired me this story.

When I see your lips move, your body turn to me, your hands draw signs in space, I hear a voice inside me. It seems to me that it is your voice; I mean: it is your voice, no doubt, but there is still a doubt. There will always be a doubt and this doubt is troublesome. This doubt makes me doubt you, your sincerity, even your existence. Who is it who’s speaking?

Who speaks in the silence of my house? Who’s talking and where are you talking from? I say “you” and it’s an “I” I’m talking about. This voice I hear inside the walls of my skull could be mine, or one of mine. Who is speaking? …

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Conversations in Second Life with Charlotte B (Australia) — excerpts

[20/01/10 04:35] Charlotte B: where i am we are badly getting the effects of climate change this summer
[20/01/10 04:35] Milena Carbone: are you australian ?
[20/01/10 04:35] Charlotte B: yes
[20/01/10 04:36] Charlotte B: it’s midnight, it still 30 degrees C, and the full moon is orange from the smoke
[20/01/10 04:39] Milena Carbone: are you living near the fire spots ?
[20/01/10 04:42] Charlotte B: closest big one is about 40km away, but the sky has been like this for weeks. visibility has been down to about 500 metres on the worst days here (Sydney)
[20/01/11 22:32] Milena Carbone: how was your sunday ?
[20/01/11 22:32] Charlotte B: very quiet sofar
[20/01/11 22:33] Charlotte B: it’s actually raining at the moment, which is great
[20/01/11 22:33] Milena Carbone: i’ve heard the fires were so intense australia experienced storms without rain
[20/01/11 22:34] Charlotte B: yes, the fires created their own lightning storms. there is not enough rain to put any of the fires out, but it might stop them from spreading so fast. i think there is still about 130 seperate fires burning
[20/01/11 22:43] Charlotte B: Well, Australia always gets bushfires, most of the trees & vegetation have evolved over time to handle that — some species will only reproduce after a fire has been through, most eucalyptus trees can handle being badly burnt & still spout new growth very quickly after a fire, but, each summer has been getting hotter, and has had record high temperatures each year for the last decade or two. so the fire seasons have been lasting longer and we have been in drought for a few years, so everything is really dry & easier to burn. so now the fires start really easily & spread really easily, and are much worse than have have been any other summer in recorded history. bushfires are normal, but these fires are far from normal.
[20/01/11 22:49] Charlotte B: i think our government will be kicked out shortly, if it isn’t seen to be doing something of substance about it. iit’s got to that point with peoples reaction to the scale of these fires. I mean, we haven’t had a blue sky for over 2 months, just smoke.
[20/01/11 22:52] Charlotte B: the fire closest to me is 512,626 ha
[20/01/13 03:23] Charlotte B: there are stars outside tonight. the sky is clear tonight — no smoke! i don’t think we’ve seen stars for over 2 months.i shall wish upon the stars. don’t you have that nursery rhyme?
Star light, star bright,
The first star I see tonight;
I wish I may, I wish I might,
Have the wish I wish tonight.
[20/01/13 04:22] Charlotte B: lots of areas lost power. so many powerlines burnt down. the country so hot that everyones airconditioning is at full blast, and the power stations can’t keep up
[20/01/13 04:29] Charlotte B: more people > more demand for cleared land, more farms, more power needed > clear land for more fuel/coal etc > more greenhouse gasses > hotter planet > more airconditioning > more power needed etc
[20/01/22 02:53] Charlotte B: we have a little garden, with some fruit trees & vege patch. most have shriveled up in the hot & dry, but we save some of our washing water to put on them to try to kkep them alive. only the hardiest plans survive, as we get the salt air from the sea too. our land is very steep & narrow as it is on a hill leading to the harbour, wedged in between other houses, so we have a few little terraces of whatever green stuff we can fit in & will stay alive. we planted 2 apple trees this year, i think they are still alive
[20/01/23 03:33] Charlotte B: it is quite surreal outside at the moment. it is hot — it is still over 30 c, and will be until about 2am. The sky over the harbour is orange, from the smoke in the sky & the lights of the city. The wind is gusting strongly, the trees waving madly & our wind chimes rattling loudly. The smeel of smoke is back, after a whole two days of blue sky & stars. Tonight i just saw a single star poking through a temporary hole in the orange-gray blankey above. In the distance the sky flashes with lightning, but no rain follows. 20 new fires today. …

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On the day when all the forests of the world started to burn, men did not have the time to understand what was really going on. It was certainly an side-effect of their carelessness, their absurd arrogance and their fury to conquer, but it was not a direct consequence. It was a deliberate act of the tree community. It was a collective suicide.

The trees had deliberated in secret for a year, following two events. The first was a bizarre message of condolence from extraterrestrial beings crossing the solar system. It had warned living beings on earth of their imminent death, which trees had already understood, by observing their irrational and irresponsible behavior. The second was the news that had shocked the entire tree community : a senile olive tree had written a letter to humans in a style so demanding and annoying that the humans had immediately destroyed it. …

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One day, an olive tree decided to write a letter to the human species.

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Within the community of trees on earth, some individuals mastered foreign languages ​​better than others. Everyone was talking to birds, elephants, mushrooms. They chirped most of the dialects of millions of species of insects and spiders. But only a very few know the language of humans.

Of course, they spoke among themselves in the common language of the trees which enabled them to philosophize, to gossip about the neighboring groves, and to share the news of the forests of the whole earth.

It is said that the trees, driven by the desire to bear witness to the seasons, had used writing for hundreds of millions of years ; a script in several dimensions, expressed through the interlacing of the branches of the crown. Seemingly chaotic, it was refined poetry with verses without beginning or end, and with sophisticated rhythms. …


Milena Carbone

Second Life fiction, I’m the character of an anonymous writer and photographer in the cloud. I live in the age of those who will be sacrificed.

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