Art in Second Life 2021 (77) Sybil by Giovanna Cerise

After my blogpost about the Summer exhibtion at La Maison d’Aneli (read here), Giovanna Cerise sent me an invitation for another installation of her: “Sybil by Giovanna Cerise“.

Giovanna Cerise is not unknow to me. Before the visit of the Summer exhibtion at La Maison d’Aneli (read here) I came across her art in May 2019 also at La Maison d’Aneli (read here). I visited Flash Back / Flash Forward in 2017 (read Simploring 2017 (42) Flash Back / Flash Forward), in 2016 I visited her LEA-installation Monochrome (read here) and in April 2015 I saw Otium (read here: A visit to Otium).
Giovanna is an Italian literature teacher and musician. In Second Life she’s active since Ende of 2008 and had many exhibtions and installations. She particpated in the LEA program participations and her list of activities and appearances is long. For more information look up her website.

Sybil by Giovanna Cerise” is inspired by the ancient figure of the Sibyl. It is set in the cave located in Cuma and rebuilt at Museum Island. According to tradition, the priestess resided in this dark place.
The sibyls were female prophets or oracles in Ancient Greece. The earliest sibyls, according to legend, prophesied at holy sites. Their prophecies were influenced by divine inspiration from a deity, originally at Delphi and Pessinos. In Late Antiquity, various writers attested to the existence of sibyls in Greece, Italy, the Levant, and Asia Minor.
(source wikipedia)

Impressions of Sybil by Giovanna Cerise (1) – the tunnel and the oracle

I got a notecard along with the invitatation that explains the background:
“According to the legend, Sibilla was a young girl of superb beauty of Greek origin who possessed great divination skills. One day the God Apollo, struck by her beauty, fell in love with her and to conquer her he promised her that he would fulfill her every wish.
Sybil took a handful of sand from the beach and asked Apollo to let it live as many years as the grains he had collected in his hand. The God satisfied her but the girl made a serious mistake: she forgot to add that she wanted to live the years in eternal youth.
The priestess lived as many years as there were grains of sand enclosed in the palm of her hand, but her body continued to wither and wrinkle year after year, until it faded into dust, eroded – just like the grains of sand – by the merciless flow of the time. Of her, it is said, only her voice and her cryptic predictions survived. Sibyl used to scatter palm leaves on which the words of the prophecy were reported;
It is said that a soldier, having received the sacred response, prepared to recompose the prophecy by assembling the palm leaves scattered by the divine breath. However, when he read the Sybil’s prediction, he noticed its double interpretation, depending on the punctuation:
Ibis, redibis, non morieris in bello – You will go, you will come back, and you will not die in the war – if the comma anticipates the negation; Ibis, redibis non, morieris in bello – You will go, you will not return, and you will die in the war – if instead it is placed after the negation.
The legends around the myth of the Sibyl are different.”

There’s a lot more to read about Sybyl on wikipedia.

Impressions of Sybil by Giovanna Cerise (2) – the roofed terrace with the soldier

The installation at the Museum Island consists of two connected parts. One part is in a tunnel, which is in a trapezoidal shape and is similar to an artificial tunnel of the greek-roman era. In the tunnel Giovanna has place several complete red figures in different poses. The crawl and they run. They are surrounded by particles, that could be letter or anything else. The light is selected very smart, so that the particles melt together and develop a certain dynamic, as if the figures would run.  Light comes into the tunnel from the left side through several passages. The passages lead to the second part, a roofed terrace where Giovanna has installed more objects.

Impressions of Sybil by Giovanna Cerise (3) – objects on the terrace

There is just one cave on the right side of the tunnel. There’s the oracle. A fountain with several coins on the ground. You can click the oracle and get a prophecy. In my case:
ANTRUM SYBIL – Cumaea Sybil’s Omphalus oracle: You have to learn the rules of the game. And then you have to play better than anyone else.

The roofed terrace features more art objects of Giovanna Cerise, quite hard to describe though. One is clearly dedicated to the soldier, that is mentioned in Giovanna’s notecard. The words from the prophecy (in Italian) appear around a red figure (the soldier) caught in a structure of transparent walls: “Ibis, redibis, non morieris in bello”.
Other objects aremore difficult to interpret, like the hand that holds an hourglass – or like the head encased in a white cloud. Don’t miss looking at the floor, there are traces of blood as well as footprints.

Impressions of Sybil by Giovanna Cerise (4)

Sybil is a very interesting exhibtion and it uses the possibilities of Second Life and the different light options very well. Please make sure that you use the advanced lighting, the shared environment and sun+moon and projectors in your viewer setting. There’s a board which explains it at one end of the roofed terrace.

I have never been to Museum Island before. In the landmark description you find the tags: “Museum Island Monuments art culture theater romantic Royal Opera music museums cinema beauty couple dance monuments arts exhibitions artist photo pics wedding live roma venezia Italia Italy” The sim hosts mre exhibitions and I might return. The Museum Island is group owned, the founder of the group is John Noone (johnnoone).

Thank you Giovanna and thank you to all who were involved enabling “Sybil by Giovanna Cerise”

Landmark to Sybil by Giovanna Cerise
wikipedia about Sibyl
Giovanna Cerise’s website

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