Tuning in with AM Radio


In the debut issue of the magazine Retropolitan, formerly known as Vamp, I have an interview with AM Radio. I want to share some extracts of the interview here on my blog.

We meet Radio along the road that cuts through the fields in The Refuge. Here is a car parked that was built in 1948. In the barn just a few yards away, stands a plane, a Spring Racer, that was built in 1912.

– Modern usually implies some cool factor, says Radio, asked why he (almost) never builds something modern.

– Trends and fads. Never trust the current. There are aspects of the collective memory of everyone that are indelible; items, shapes, colours, moods that are universal. They provide comfort and safety. Like the house here: It isn’t a modern McMansion. It’s a classic handmade framed Midwest farm house. That alone implies a narrative and a reason for being. It probably began to get built in the 1920’s, while the bannister at the stairs is more late 40’s architecture. The house transcends into being an icon when it seems to carry some inherent values.



So people might come to Radio’s builds to experience a simpler life. And yes, it’s there, with the barn, the cozy front porch of the farm house, those old billboards. But the builder insists there are darker undercurrents running below the iconography. In a corner of the house, for example, there are tipped chairs.

– A chair doesn’t end up tipped over without a significant story. People throw chairs through the windows in a fire – they get knocked over in a fight. It’s a good indicator of a situation that got out of handle.


– I might sound extreme, but I’m really conscious of what I’m trying to do with my builds. They are extremely personal to me.

So personal, he admits, that it took a long time to get used to looking at other people’s photoshopping of his work.

– Posting it on Flickr, putting their own experiences on top of it. This has been my biggest challenge in Second Life. I have since learned to love what people do with it. When I make something now, I understand it will have a life of its own.

Radio says all he can do, is to be the best and most influential user of his own work.

– If I take a picture for Flickr, it better be the best take on the build. So, it’s more like steering the work, and seeing where it goes. A visit to Flickr is always an exploration.


If you want to read the full interview, please pick up a copy of Retropolitan in-world, for example at the fine club Flashmans.


~ by theresecarfagno on December 11, 2008.

5 Responses to “Tuning in with AM Radio”

  1. Great blog entry, Therese, and it’s interesting that you brought out how AM is learning to enjoy others’ interpretations of his work. Case in point, my mirthful fun with his very temporary winter scene: http://secondarts.wordpress.com/2008/11/26/that-am-radio/

    Note that he’s come full circle, even offering a caption for the snapshot! The guy’s a good one, one of SL’s best.

  2. Thank you for that one, Morris. Yes, I definitely see AM as a man with a great deal of humour. And also a good one.

  3. […] making pictures of their builds. The following quote (also the avatar and sim in the image) is of AM Radio but it seems this is somewhat a widespread issue: I might sound extreme, but I’m really […]

  4. […] can also find an excerpt on my […]

  5. […] can also find an excerpt on my […]

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