Saturday, August 05, 2006

Butterfly Tiki Bar

Butterfly Tiki BarButterfly Tiki BarButterfly Tiki Bar





The Butterfly Tiki Bar in the mainland sim of Raiden (view on map | direct teleport) is another curiously engaging build that takes full advantage of Second Life's unique combination of references to and departures from the physical world to create both interesting architectural form and intriguing narrative subtext.

In somewhat typical Tiki Bar fashion the location occupies only 16 square meters of waterfront; however the compact floorplate multiplies over seven levels, each with its own functional contribution (i.e. dance floor, hot tub). Through these additional levels the build adds to the usual Polynesian experience by incorporating a wide swath of pan-Asian influences such as a Japanese Tea Room located just a few floors up from the bumpin' booty pad. The result is a slim, totemic (dare we say 'torch-like') piece of off-ramp ouevre that wouldn't be out of place in urban centres such as Macau, Manila, or Malé. In most of these cities the eccentricity of the build would actually be a form of utility, borne out of the need to make the most of what little land might be available.

In Second Life, however, it sits without any adjacent neighbours and yet nestles up close to a road bridge running across the waterway. The siting seems to justify and benefit from the verticality of the build, the seemingly intentional choice to address the roadway condition rather than just say, coping with it, makes the build all the more appropriate to the physical attributes of the location. At the same time it takes advantage of the lack of gravity (and the avian abilities of the avatar) to create an unstable, almost provisional quality that establishes a clear dialogue with the virtual.

This, combined with the unsavoury goings-on implied on some of the upper levels gives the build a whimsically gritty narrative tension that not only enhances the overall experience but sits in stark contrast to the idyllic setting and technical perfection of the Azure Islands Tiki Bar (view on map | direct teleport), for example, where the experience is overwhelmingly pleasant and stress-free, complete with crashing waves and screenings of the popular video podcast Tiki Bar TV.

Both destinations are worth a visit, IMHO, but if the two were pitted against each other in Mortal Kombat, well, you know. Raiden Wins.

4 Comments:

At 8/08/2006 3:51 PM, Blogger Rez said...

Now if only there were vertical land parceling...

 
At 8/12/2006 12:49 AM, Blogger Prokofy Neva said...

Hehe, Chip, you are a gem. I can see you are going to new heights with your blog and going way beyond architecture and into the metaspaces...

I feel cheered by this hardy little narrative of the Tiki Bar, it refreshes me on my journey on the mainland, which has been an arduous one of late.

Lines like this, well, it's sheer poetry. You are the "Car Talk" of Second Life, Chip Poutine, and you have found that Architecture is the Entree to the Very Soul of Our World.

>the result is a slim, totemic (dare we say 'torch-like') piece of off-ramp ouevre that wouldn't be out of place in urban centres such as Macau, Manila, or Malé. In most of these cities the eccentricity of the build would actually be a form of utility...In Second Life, however... The siting seems to justify and benefit from the verticality of the build, the seemingly intentional choice to address the roadway condition rather than just say, coping with it, makes the build all the more appropriate...to create an unstable, almost provisional quality that establishes a clear dialogue with the virtual....gives the build a whimsically gritty narrative tension that not only enhances the overall experience but sits in stark contrast to the idyllic setting and technical perfection of the Azure Islands Tiki Bar...

Yes, Mainland 1
Islands 0

 
At 8/29/2006 9:55 PM, Blogger JackofEvil said...

Thanks!!!

Chip, you are blessed with a happy talent for composition, and a remarkable felicity of expression. Why, you write ten times better than any man in Congress...including me.

Oh! Sorry, I was channeling John Adams there, for a moment. Even so, I was delighted to see that someone noticed my 16 square meters of silly mayhem. The design principle is an experiment in neo-retro-maxi-minimalist erectile capitalism, so I was particularly pleased that you noted the implied unsavoury goings-on, and declared a "whimsically gritty narrative tension" as their effect...that phrase really captures a salient slice of my style and my way of thinking. May I appropriate it, from time to time? Credited, of course, to its author.

I'd love to meet you there (or anywhere) and chat sometime, but I will be an SL expatriate - as I am in RL - for a few months, yet. Perhaps when I get my lives back.

As always, your obedient...

(drumroll)

Jack of Evil

 
At 8/29/2006 10:20 PM, Blogger Chip Poutine said...

No Jack, THANK YOU for a great work of virtual architecture!

By all means, feel free to quote away whenever the mood strikes. I guess I should get one of them Creative Commons dealies on here so that you needn't even have asked.

Look me up when you're back in SL and we'll tip a few at the base of your merchantile shaft. Er, wait...

-CP

 

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