The skin is the largest human body organ, and besides being its protecting layer and a system that regulates the body temperature and receives pain and pleasure stimuli, it also strongly contributes to the individual identification: it is the skin that in the first place separates physically our inside and the outer world – the other. The color of skin -– maybe its most interesting and controversial characteristic — has been reason for passions and wars in the human history, for it can either unite or separate, regarding resemblances or differences.
Using the skin color, the present work – SKINdoscope SL – builds an interactive tree in Second Life where each person who interacts with it creates a leaf with his/her skin color. The poetics and visual results are formed by and depend on the relationship between the leaves and their colors, in a game of alterity and identity. Since the person who interacts can choose the color either of his/her body or of his/her avatar body, the SKINdoscope SL – a digital work – reflects data from “real” and digital lives coexisting.
Also, the tree produces L$ 1,00 coins for each 10 new leaves created and the coins can be taken by any avatar who touches them. The coins represent the richness of people interaction and diversity. This ability of producing money in a tree is only possible in digital realms but it has extensions in the “real” life, in a cybrid process. Since this digital money can be used in “real” life too, digital and “real” mix again.
In this context, the present work intends to lead the participant to reflect about questions related to the poetics of the alterity/identity and the interpenetrations of the “real” and digital lives through a metaverse.
Participate by searching skindoscope in Second Life.
- Martha Carrer Cruz Gabriel, Unicentro Belas Artes de São Paulo / University of São Paulo, Brazil