Jonathan Soderstrom of Cactus Software is currently developing the third installment of his "Mondo" game series, which includes the investigations of AGENT-65386 in Mondo Agency and the "illogical puzzle game" Mondo Medicals. Details regarding the new Mondo game are vague, but judging from the stark, confining interiors of these two trailers, it seems Soderstrom is at work at translating the banality of what Marc Augé once termed the "non-place" (defined as nondescript transient spaces, such as the airport or the hotel room) to the game's environment.
Artist Wafaa Bilal will speak at the EFA Project Space tonight at 7pm. Bilal made headlines earlier this year when Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute's administration pulled the plug on the exhibition of his project exploring identity and propagandist video games The Night of Bush Capturing: A Virtual Jihadi. Bilal then moved the show to the Sanctuary for Independent Media, at which point the city of Troy promptly responded by shutting down the space due to minor infractions. (The short documentary Art Does Not Equal Terrorism follows the entire fiasco.) Tonight Bilal will turn his attention to a previous project from 2007, Domestic Tension, in which he stationed himself for 31 days as a moving target for a robotic paintball machine controlled by users over the internet. Born and raised in Iraq, Bilal's work often deals with the tension involved in belonging to two opposing territories, the United States and his native country. Journalist David Gargill will moderate the discussion.
1. arrow keys to move
2. space bar to jump
3. explore, explore
4. stop trying to "get it"
Performance, 3 hours
Machine Project, Los Angeles
Statement: Inspired by Bruce Nauman's 1973 work "Tony Sinking into the Floor, Face Up and Face Down", 9 dancers outfitted in fantasy armour recreated his performance in slow motion combined with movements based on computer game death animations, this piece was accompanied by a high volume binaural beats reputed to induce out of body experiences. Closely linked to his past process of modification of existing computer games, as well as performative events with medieval re-enactment and fantasy live action role playing subcultures, Death Animations is a re-interpretation of the Nauman work through the lens of "New Age" ideas of astral projection and out of body experience, computer games, and recent foreign conflict.
Jason Rohrer, creator of Passage and Gravitation, has a new game, Between, which is now available for download through Esquire.com. Unlike his previous works, which pull their narratives from life experience -- such as one's path through birth and death in Passage and inspiration in Gravitation -- Between occupies more surreal territory. Directions are not explicit, and while a two-player game, the presence of the other player, and the correlation between players to action in the game, is obscured. The players, drifting between "wake" and "sleep", must navigate the space in order to decipher their tasks, which involve building a tower of colored blocks. The tower can only be built using certain colored blocks, and the availability of these colors is entirely dependent on the progress of the other player's tower. Thus, while the individual player's tower building seems to operate in remove from the other player, he is, in fact, reliant on their decisions in order to complete the job. The game's ambiguity sets up an interaction between players that draws on cooperation, but a cooperation that is both confusing and difficult to attain.
Artist's statement- Vote For Anything is a kind of a social experiment as well as an Internet "game" that was running even before the widespread adoption of the "World Wide Web" HTTP protocol. It originally ran as part of my gopher-based "e-zine" Glum Homebody, on the gopher of ECHO, gopher.echonyc.com (which is no longer available)...As the Web expanded beyond the original confines of CERN, I adapted the underlying program to run as a cgi-bin program on my personal web page at ECHO and also at WFMU.org, where it runs today. A few years ago, I prettied up the color scheme, but it basically runs the same as it always has... It's an interesting art piece that can be hijacked by someone with an axe to grind, simply by writing in people and things they wish to hate or promote. From an early implementation, I've always filtered out HTML in the write-ins, so that no redirection or other spoofing would be possible. By allowing for negative votes, one can actively disapprove of something, which fulfills a real need for voters. No one is restricted from multiple votes for multiple items, which sounds like it should make it easy to jam the election in some way, but in fact, this has never happened. The list of candidates ends up looking a little like lists of search engine search items, but they are a little more intentional. The open ended nature of the list lets incongruous items creep in between more serious entries, if any. In fact, incongruous items tend to take over the list, making a kind of collaborative poem, if there's enough traffic.
Cory Arcangel made a trailer (above) for his upcoming solo exhibition at Team Gallery in Manhattan, called "Adult Contemporary," as well as his performance "Continuous Partial Awareness" on November 14th at the New Museum as part of Rhizome's ongoing New Silent Series. For the exhibition, Arcangel will explore the limits of technology from the perspective of a "non-expert" -- instead of seeking out tactics which subvert the intended use of technology, the works in the show will use technology exactly as it was designed, albeit "poorly" and "in an uneducated manner." The performance will touch on the experience of "continuous partial awareness" which the artist describes as an "eroded degenerate modern version of multitasking" explaining, "...you know, like, when you have 3 IM windows open, 2 email inboxs dinging away, are txting 5 different people, and also have 5 tabs open on your browser, each with updated content."
3d installation and 3d game in university library Amsterdam, 2005.
Artist's statement: By collecting information and killing bookworms in the game, the player can cause events in "real life"