agency

GAMES, PLAY AND CONNECTIVITY by MARC GARRETT AND RUTH CATLOW

The particular skills that we evolve with different kinds of play help to construct and shape who we are, how we view our world and what we become capable of as individuals and societies. Among other things play informs our ideas about agency, social relations and the technologies that we develop. The works in the Game/Play exhibition subvert and extend the logic of everyday play and games. They invite audience members (individually and collectively) to take the role of players and contributors to their meaning. When interacting with these pieces in physical space or across digital networks, audiences/players generate alternative, active ‘social spaces’ through their experience of the work and dialogues with each other. The aesthetic experience is primarily “based on the dynamics of communicated consciousness rather than visual criteria” (Larner, C. et al. 1995).1

Facade by Michael Mateas and Andrew Stern (2005)


http://www.interactivestory.net/

Relationships are never easy things to negotiate, whether between companies, countries or individuals. The ones that cut the deepest into our psyches are those between individuals. Always the hardest and often the least logical, all our mental strength is required to negotiate our way through them. Constantly on edge and trying to react accordingly to keep at least some kind of dialogue going between all involved parties so that things don’t end in despair. At least, that’s the hope!

Truck Dismount by Jetro Lauha (2006)


http://jet.ro/dismount/

Truck Dismount is an excellent demo in the genre of physics games; a genre which harnesses powerful programming techniques to elicit visceral game play experiences. Wikipedia defines this category as including ‘computer and video games and simulators where the principal element of game play involves laws of physics; for example, predicting paths of moving objects, colliding objects, or estimating structural integrity. Excluded are games such as flight simulators or cue ball games where physics are simulated but are not the most defining factor of the game play, or the “selling point” of the game’.

VisitorsStudio by Furtherfield.org (2006)


http://www.visitorsstudio.org

When placing Furtherfield.org's VisitorsStudio in the context of a 'work' (sic) in the traditional sense, one might have a problem with definitions. For example, VS, an interesting acronym upon reflection, is formally a 'stone soup' model. That is, VS acts as a container, connector, and root node for artists and performers wishing to virtually get together and 'jam' online. This is a brilliant metaphor for an artspace informed by elements of rave culture, where in many cases, the participants network, do their own performances, like fire-dancing, trade 'props', and share one another's presence. In many ways, it almost creates a networked 'Temporary Autonomous Zone'1 in which the participants freely trade media, perform, and chat under the loose rules of behaviour established upon entering the VS.

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