Art in Second Life 2022 (22) Paroxysm by Milena Carbone

Sunday, February 27th, I got an invitation to visit “Paroxysm“, the latest exhibition at The Carbone Studio.
Milena Carbone had already sent me a picture named “Madness” a few days before. “Madness” was a free gift of her to all of her followers, expressing her despair and her support for the Ukrainian people.

Milena wrote in her invitation:

This morning, on Sunday 27th of February 2022, I woke up with a terrible headache.
For several days and nights I’ve been looking for information on TV channels and the internet about the events in Ukraine. I felt an irrepressible need to express what I felt, and that’s why I created this exhibition on Second Life and published a text on Medium, in just one day.
I know that this is no more than a relief to me. There is no judgment or message beyond my beliefs. And again, I have expressed very little compared to what is boiling inside me.
I offer this to you, it is yours. Thank you to everyone who pays attention to my work.

Paroxysm” consists of 6 pictures, they are all free for you to grab as a gift. And Milena gifted a text. I thought of writing an excerpt for the blog or to quote parts of it, but then I came to terms that I just publish Milena’s text as it it and that I use the blog to further spread it.

Here it it is .. a tribute to the Ukrainian defenders of democracy and beyond.

For years now, Europe has been suffering from an extremely serious neurological disease that I call the sleeping beauty syndrome.

Europe is the country in the world that offers the most comfort, the most social protection, the most job and work opportunities, the most civic engagement, the most technological and social innovation, the most culture, that is the most aware and responsible in terms of ecological transition (even if it is far from enough), where democracy and the rule of law are guaranteed to protect minorities and genders, to dialogue freely and openly with a great diversity of people who do not share your opinion in order to find consensus, to make one’s own point of view change. Of course, it takes time, of course it is not perfect, perfection is so boring. There is such a density of landscapes, celebrations, gastronomy, arts of living that a lifetime is not enough to explore them all. In spite of this, a growing part of the European people complains and calls the democratically elected leaders dictators. They complain that they have to make efforts, that they have to change their habits, that they have to change their consumption patterns, that they have to eat healthily, that they have to pay too much for petrol, that they have to give hospitality to desperate migrants, that they cannot enjoy themselves without restraint, the old illusory fantasy of the Parisian bourgeois revolution of more than fifty years ago. Extremist political parties feed on this resentment, all over Europe, the so-called extreme left or right, which still assume that they have a democratic foundation. These parties pervert the notion of freedom, which is hard work, by egoism which is lazy. They simplify the world in order to be on a par with the uncultured and suggest simplistic solutions that only serve their personal interests.

What has fallen asleep in Europe is the taste for the effort of thinking, and the courage of acting. And what is happening today in Ukraine, which passes through Europe like an intense pain passing through a weakened sleepy body, is our impotence to think about the articulation between history and the present, to unmask the extremist imposture that rewrites history to justify the murders of the present, and it is our impotence to think about the articulation between our values, the courage of the present action while facing death. In France, where an increasingly revisionist and violent extreme right-wing is unfolding at the same time as the tragic events in Eastern Europe, we are experiencing a tension at the limit of what is bearable.

But the sleeping beauty, perhaps, is waking up. Not with a sweet kiss from the charming Prince, alas, but with a solid hangover and the awareness that there are several intruders in your room who have all fucked you during this time. They are hysterical, lawless hucksters who despise you because they are convinced that, on the one hand, you are no longer capable of thinking, and on the other, that you no longer have the courage to fight for a cause.

Today, on February 27, 2022, we are closer than ever to a tragedy such as there has never been in Europe, not even during the Nazi period. What can happen is worse than it has ever been. But people, young and older, are standing for freedom and responsibility, fighting for the values of humanism. If Europe escapes from the dead end in which a few madmen have led us, I dream of a courageous, generous, cooperative, intelligent and cultured, open and rational generation, which finally makes Europe take the path of Enlightenment and tolerance that it has lost for centuries.

Impressions of “Paroxysm” by Milena Carbone


I have already received a few messages from various lecturers who think that a young woman, an artist moreover, is not qualified to speak about what is happening today, and above all they explain to me that I do not know history. But I know history very well. I know history so well that I know it is a fiction, as reality is a fiction, and that it is very easy to rewrite history as it suits us. This is why I don’t listen to politicians talking about history, I prefer to quench my thirst for knowledge with academics and archaeologists, in the silence and respect of libraries or historical sites, suspending my judgment.

Speaking of historical sites and witnesses, I have lived since my childhood in Alsace, in France. It is my “Heimat”, a small territory in the heart of Western Europe, which for millennia has known wars and subjugations, but also glory, thanks to the creativity and work of farmers, fishermen, craftsmen, tireless merchants and explorers, builders of cathedrals and universities, curious scientists, inspired artists and enthusiastic and innovative entrepreneurs. My family has lived in this area since at least the Thirty Years’ War, which took place in the early 17th century. The traces of my family could not be found beyond this period when 80% of the Alsatian population was massacred by Swedish mercenaries. Some of my ancestors fought for France, others for Germany. My grandfather preferred to desert Hitler’s army and I listened to him talk about forgiveness and the matter of present peace.

Today, we are living in the climax of a rude awakening. All awakenings are violent, but every day is the best day of my life.

Milena Carbone

I am from Germany myself. The very day I received Milena’s invitation and read her text as well as visited her exhibition “Paroxysm”, Germany announced to send defense weapons to Ukraine and to reverse the German policy of the last 70 years by a massive effort to strengthen its defense forces within Europe.

Thank you Milena for your text and for your exhibition “Paroxysm

Stand for Ukraine, Stand for a Free Europe!

Landmark to The Carbone Studio
Milena’s website
Milena Carbone’s flickr
Milena Carbone’s writing

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