Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Adam Ramona's "Basilica" - The sounds of (in)Justice

The "Visions of Global Justice" art show, which was to have closed last Sunday, has been extended until the end of March (teleport directly from here)

If all you do is gaze upon it, Australian Adam Ramona's (aka Adam Nash) installation for the "Visions of Global Justice" art show - is simply a pretty, translucent sculpture in purple and white. On the opening day of the show, and with 100 avatars in attendance, the lag was so severe that the scripts for this complex interactive piece were not at their best, so I went back at a less busy time.

I was to discover that "Basilica" is an auditory and emotional assault, and certainly one of the most challenging art pieces I have come across in my short Second Life. Like a powerful film that you must see, but cannot bare to watch again, Basilica touches on dark and difficult inner chords with its harrowing sounds.

Adam Ramona's "Basilica" - An audiovisual sculpture on Global Justice
Touch each of the pieces and the floor of the installation to provoke movement and sounds

Adam had this to say about the piece, which was curated by Delia Lake, "The sounds in the work are based upon the inversion of the connotations of global justice: that of global terror. Much violence and mass murder has been perpetrated, ostensibly in the name of justice, and such acts continue to occur globally to this day. Therefore, I have sourced the sounds of gunshots (in particular the AK47, a symbol to some of the global terror movement), bomb explosions and screams, manipulating the harmonics according to a rational scale of my own devising, to create a compellingly beautiful yet haunting sonic system. Some philosophers, such as Peter Singer, extend the notion of global justice to all sentient beings - not only humans - therefore, I have also used the sounds of animals being slaughtered."

Adam Ramona and his "Basilica" for "Visions of Global Justice"
I profiled Adam Ramona and his "Unsung Songs" show in October

Adam went on to explain, "White is seen in some cultures to represent innocence and purity, a state from which global justice can be conceived. White is also seen as the colour of hospitals, and therefore perhaps represents one of the aims of the contemporary global justice movement, that of universal access to health care. Purple is regarded in some cultures as symbolising power and nobility, reflecting the aim of universal empowerment through global justice. Purple is also reportedly favoured by young children, returning the cycle to innocence and purity. I would like to acknowledge the assistance of Nicole Lawther in the conceptualization and design of this work."

Many thanks to the MacArthur Foundation, Global Kids and the Justice Commons for hosting this event, together with the USC Network Culture project. In addition to Adam Ramona, as well as Tooter Claxton and Pavig Lok who's installations I have recently blogged about, the following artists created original art works for this show: Tuna Oddfellow, AM Radio, Juria Yoshikawa, Dancoyote Antonelli, Filthy Fluno, elros Tuominen, Chance Abattoir, Josina Burgess, Velazquez Bonetto, Junivers Stockholm.