Disillusion

Disillusion is an art project in the form of a strategic board game for two players. Its main characteristic is that, the more you play it, the less you want to play it, leading to a more than likely abandonment of the game. In this page you can find everything related to Disillusion’s development. Disillusion is intended to be eventually published and distributed in regular game shops.

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ILLUSION – DISILLUSION

Solo exhibition in Artium, museum of contemporary art of Vitoria (Spain)

www.artium.org

Within the Praxis program

23rd April-24th June

Fanzine de la exposición (español)

In Illusion – Disillusion the exhibition space will be transformed in a sort of “game room”. A compilation of works that connect both Illusion (art project in the form of a novel) and Disillusion (art project in the form of a board game) will be displayed. All of them are eminently participative and multidisciplinary. David Maroto’s practice focuses on the crossover between literature and visual arts, on the one hand, and the use of games as a creative method, on the other. The idea is that the spectator acquires an active role in the process of reception of the work, not only by playing/executing each piece separately, but also when reconstructing the network of relations that lead from one work to the next one.

Public conversation with curator Blanca de la Torre + Illusion Buzzword Bingo in the evening of 25th April. Illusion Buzzword Bingo is the name of a collective game based on an art project in the form of a novel, called Illusion, by David Maroto. Bingo cards are distributed amongst the audience, with the particularity that they do not contain the usual 1-to-90 numbers, but words (a different combination of words in each card). A reader reads a passage of the novel Illusion out loud. Participating public will cross out words in their cards as they appear in the text when uttered during the reading. Like in the original game, there is a prize for the player who calls out “bingo”; this is, for the one who crosses out all words in their card before anyone else does.

Illusion-Disillusion consiste en la creación de un espacio que casi podría denominarse “salón de juegos”. Se mostrarán una selección de obras que conectan  Illusion (proyecto artístico en forma de novela) y Disillusion (proyecto artístico en forma de juego de mesa). Todas ellas poseen un carácter eminentemente participativo y multidisciplinar. La práctica artística de Maroto gira alrededor del cruce entre literatura y artes visuales por un lado, y en el uso del juego como método artístico por otro. La idea es que el espectador adquiera un rol activo en el proceso de recepción de la obra, no solo al jugar/ejecutar cada una de ellas por separado, sino también al reconstruir el entramado de relaciones que las vinculan y que llevan de una a otra.

Conversación pública con la comisaria Blanca de la Torre + Illusion Buzzword Bingo la tarde del 25 de abril. Illusion Buzzword Bingo es el nombre de un juego colectivo basado en un proyecto artístico en forma de novela, llamado Illusion, de David Maroto. Cartones de bingo son repartidos entre el público, con la particularidad de que no contienen los acostumbrados números del 1 al 90, sino palabras (una combinación de palabras diferente en cada cartón). Un lector lee en voz alta un pasaje de la novela Illusion. El público participante habrá de tachar las palabras en su cartón según van apareciendo en el texto y sonando a lo largo de la lectura. Como en el juego original, hay un premio para aquel que cante bingo, esto es, para aquel que tache todas las palabras en su cartón antes que los demás.

Seven Stamps: At the entrance of the exhibition space there is a free publication (a fanzine) available for all visitors. On the last page, you will find some coupons which will be stamped in accordance with the results obtained when you play each game in the gallery. Just by playing one of the games you will get 1 stamped coupon. Obtaining a specific result (winning Disillusion or Empathy, completing the Puzzle, resolving the Tangram, etc.) is worth extra stamps. The gallery attendant will be responsible for providing the corresponding stamps. Next to each piece you will find the rules of the game to play or activate each one. When you obtain 7 stamped coupons, you can exchange your fanzine for a free ticket to the museum.

Siete Sellos: A la entrada del espacio expositivo hay una publicación gratis (un fanzine) a disposición de los espectadores. En la última página encontrarás unos cupones que se van sellando en virtud de los resultados alcanzados al jugar cada pieza presente en la sala. El hecho mismo de jugar una de las piezas vale 1 cupón estampado. Conseguir un cierto resultado (ganar a Disillusion o Empatía, completar el Puzzle, resolver el Tangram, etc.) vale sellos extra. El vigilante de sala se encargará de estampar los sellos correspondientes. Junto a cada pieza encontrarás las reglas para jugar o activar cada una de ellas. Cuando consigas 7 cupones estampados, puedes canjear este fanzine por una entrada gratis al museo.

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GAGARIN, The Artists in Their Own Words

Group exhibition in S.M.A.K. Museum of Contemporary Art, Ghent (Belgium)

4th December 2009 – 14th March 2010

S.M.A.K. is showing a unique & comprehensive exhibition with works of the participating artists of GAGARIN, confronting their textual contributions from the complete GAGARIN oeuvre with works from the museum and special loans. The exhibition includes work by Marc Manders, Allora & Calzadilla, Edith Dekyndt, Lois Weinberger, Philippe Van Snick, Juan Muñoz, Gabriel Kuri, Jimmie Durham, Kirsten Pieroth, Maria Serebriakova, Richard Serra, Willem Oorebeek, Manfredu Schu, Joe Scanlan, Ria Pacquée and others. I participate with Disillusion, which will be in play (during the opening evening only) and display (throughout the show).

“Games have those characteristics defined by Roger Caillois: they are freely entered into; separated from the run of ordinary “serious” life, they are circumscribed by their own time and space; they are uncertain, their outcomes not predetermined; they are economically unproductive and not concerned with material interests; they are governed by rules (…). In elaborating the famous definition provided by Huizinga in Homo Ludens thus far, Caillois might have added that they are entered into for pleasure, and may bring unpremeditated insights. In many of these respects they have much in common with art”.

Excerpt from A book of surrealist games, ed. by Mel Gooding

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NEVER LATE THAN BETTER, group exhibition at EFA Project Space, New York City

April 11 – May 16, 2009

Curated by Trong Gia Nguyen

Artists: Julieta Aranda, Peter Belyi, Hannes Bend, Christopher Chiappa, Eric Doeringer, Josephine Wister Fauire, Marc Ganzglass, Evan Gruzis, Christopher Ho, Marci MacGuffie, David Maroto, Laura Nova, Yuki Onodera, Rebeca Reeve, Egill Saebjornsson, Luke Stettner, Halldor Arnar Ulfarsson, Arnold von Wedemeyer, Mike Womack

“People like us, who believe in physics, know that the distinction between past, present, and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion.” (Albert Einstein)

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For Never Late Than Better I displayed Disillusion in a new arrangement that allowed visitors to play the game in the exhibition space itself.

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EFA Project Space presents Never Late Than Better, on view from April 11 through May 17, 2009. On the centennial anniversary of the Futurist Manifesto, Never Late than Better contends with the questionable boundaries of space, time, and reality. Re-appraising the past and re-fashioning the present, the exhibition foregrounds a “bizarro universe” that counters the time-honored day-to-days of war, speed, and misogyny that F.T. Marinetti forecast in the Manifesto, published in Le Figaro in 1909.

Early or late, Time is above all else a form of adhesive, a correspondence that encompasses both the spoken and unspoken word. Never Late Than Better features artists who tweak the vagaries of reality and consider the laws of time and physics as an aesthetic. The Futurist Manifesto gives us occasion to celebrate the many faceted possibilities of the now, which look forward to the evolved commonplace, things such as universe expansion, collapsible theology, enlightened shadows, irreversible time, and the anti-Futurist whose penchant for prediction flames out with every undying death.

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DISILLUSION TOURNAMENT, Tina B. Festival (Prague)

It took place on 11th October 2008 from 15.30 to 22.30 pm in KLUB LÁVKA (Novotného lávka 1, Prague 1).This event was hosted by Tina B. festival and curated by Blanca de la Torre.

http://tina-b.eu/eng

Eight players started the first round: Stefano Cagol vs. Daniel González; Avelino Sala vs. Blanca de la Torre; Pablo San José vs. Cynthia Viera; Mariela Rossi vs. Adam Vackár.

Four players got through to the semi-finals: Daniel vs. Blanca; Pablo vs. Mariela.

The best two players disputed the Great Final during the Pink Carpet Party: Daniel vs. Mariela. Daniel became eventually the champion and received his prize during a ceremony after seven hours of Tournament.

First round: 8 players, 15.30 pm

Semi finals: 4 players, 17.30 pm

Great final: 2 players, 21.30 pm

Prize-giving Ceremony: Disillusion champion, 22.30 pm

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IN BETWEEN

Group show in [De is Ka], Amsterdam 10th – 18th May 2008

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I define Disillusion as a public art project because it is planned to be mass produced and distributed in stores in the next future. Disillusion intends to have a long term effect in the public sphere where it is distributed. It has nothing to do with spectacular interventions which look for a quick, ephemeral and superficial result. On contrary, Disillusion is meant to be used by public in their daily contexts and to become a more or less intense experience in their everyday life (just as the reading of a book would do).

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PRESENTATION AT ARTI07, The Hague. 27th October 2007. Read more

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PRESENTATIONI IN O3ONE (Belgrade), in the framework of the Art-e-conomy project, curated by Marko Stamenkovic. 24th May 2007. Read more

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Publications:

GAGARIN, the artists in their own words

Contribution to issue #19, October 2009

The preliminary notes of my game Disillusion are published for the first time. Other contributing artists in this issue: Danny Devos, Ed Ruscha, Petrit Halilaj, Pierre Bismuth, Ingrid Mwangi, Robert Hutter, Ermias Kifleyesus, Paul Chan.

Gagarin is an artist’s magazine (since 2000) entirely dedicated to the publication of especially written and unpublished texts by artists who are now working anywhere in the world. Concept & coordination, Wilfried Huet

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More info on Gagarin #19

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AN(OTHER) PUBLICATION

Edited by Katarina Zdjelar and Renee Ridgway. Published by Piet Zwart Institute in collaboration with Revolver Archiv für Aktuelle Kunst. April 2007

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Book project around manifold perspectives on otherness. Covers for Another Publication were made by 164 international artists. I contributed with page number 13 from Disillusion’s rules book, in which it is explained how to attack the opponent and eventually make his pieces disappear from the game board.

With texts by Mieke Bal, Rosi Braidotti, Boris Buden, Frans-Willem Korsten, Bojana Kunst, Dieter Lesage, Thomas Michelon, Steve Rushton, Hito Steryerl, Nato Thompson, Jan Verwoert and Jelena Vesic.

Among the participant artists: Oliver Ressler, Mieke Bal, Ivan Grubanov, Bik van der Pol, Melvin Moti, Tere Recarens, Carlos Aires, Matthijs de Bruine, Klaas van Gorkum & Iratxe Jaio, Anita Di Bianco, Libia Castro & Olafur Olafsson, Judi Werthein, Risk Hazekamp, Desirée Palmen, Guerrilla Girls, Manon de Boer, Nasrin Tabatabai…


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RECORD OF A CONVERSION: from art project to marketable game

For more than a year I participated in different game-events, such as the game fairs Ducosim (Utrecht 2005, 2006) and Internationale Spieltage Essen (2006). It was an interesting and fruitful experience because I could test my game with real experts in that matter, the so-called “gamers”. With their feedbacks and opinions I could adapt step by step my original game Disillusion into a more acceptable version to the game market requirements. At the end of this process of conversion I had already established some contacts in the game world. Disillusion has thus evolved from an art project into a product liable to be mass produced by a game company.

This video shows the process to print a board game. Duration 5′ 26”, colour, sound.

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Ducosim game fair. December 2006.

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New prototype for Disillusion (called Garden Maze as a possible name for its commercial edition). A very important step was to create a new design for the game that takes into account technical questions regarding a real production for the market. This hand made dummy is not intended to be an unique artwork, but a prototype to be reproduced by a game printer. It reflects the results of multiple tests by “gamers” (whose opinion orientated me towards what “a good game” must be like) and meetings with game printers for technical matters (regarding materials, thickness, measurements and other kinds of solutions). The design of the game fits now in a A4 size standing box, book case-like in which all the elements are kept.

Essen Internationale Spieltage. October 2006. Read more.

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Ducosim game fair. December 2005. Disillusion was presented in the “game world” for the first time.

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DISILLUSION AND SECOND CIRCLE

These two projects grew up with parallel lives. From the beginning I thought of Disillusion and Second Circle as two projects that would complement each other. The ideas that came from the development of one of them could be applied to the other one and vice versa. Disillusion was the source where all Second Circle’s works came from. For many years, every work that I created was directly or indirectly related to Disillusion in different ways.

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GAME RULES (synopsis)

Disillusion has three levels on which to be played. Players start on Level A till they feel that they have a certain control over the game’s dynamics and it is time to upgrade to the next level. Each level adds a little set of rules to the already existing ones and, in so doing, alters the game in unexpected turns. With this system players learn to play it gradually, from a basic version to the full game. What follows below are not the rules of the game, but a rough description of the situations it gives way to:

LEVEL A: On this level, also known as Wear Phase, one plays to win, as in a conventional game. One of the players must lose for the other to win. It is a struggle between “I”, the subject, and “you”, the opponent, the other. The meaning of the game is to strip the opponent of her 6 pieces (also called Illusions), whilst keeping at least one of yours. The Illusions are played in rounds. When one loses a round, he also loses an Illusion. The game can thus take between six and eleven rounds. There are rules to play each round on the board, to accomplish your goals in the game, and to attack the opponent.

LEVEL B: This level is also called Flash. A little set of rules is added, so that a new situation in the game is created: The player who is losing finds herself in a very advantageous position to win the game in the next round. In other words, the closer you are to lose, the closer you get to win and vice versa. This dynamic might cause an on growing feeling of frustration in the players. Playing to win only leads to your own defeat. On the other hand, playing to lose would most likely lead to the same result. Disillusion enters in this way an absurd loop and becomes a game that, the more you play it, the less you want to play it. This situation may very well lead to the abandonment of the game. Players do get thus through an actual experience of disillusionment, limited perhaps within the boundaries of a game, but actual anyhow.

LEVEL C: If players do not abandon the game, they can opt for upgrading to the last level. Level C (also called Exit Way) offers a compensation game for those who lost by Flash at an early stage of the play, in one of the first rounds (the sooner Flash happens, the more intense the disillusion is). By way of this special compensation game, the players get the means to create their own Illusions and add them as pieces to play in the game. Although Disillusion’s absurd condition cannot be overcome, the rules of the game nonetheless open so that players can modify its dynamics to a certain extent.

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SKETCHES AND MODELS

The first notions I had about Disillusion contemplated two basic ideas. One, the new artwork had to adopt the form of a board game that, the more you played it, the less you wanted to play it, creating a situation that may eventually lead to the abandonment of the game. Two, it would be in close relation to Second Circle and both projects would have a parallel development, complementing each other throughout their different phases.

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Disillusion is an art project in the form of a strategic board game for two players. Its main characteristic is that, the more you play it, the less you want to play it, leading to a more than likely abandonment of the game. Disillusion has three levels on which to be played. Players start on Level A till they feel that they have a certain control over the game’s dynamics and it is time to upgrade to the next level. Each level adds a little set of rules to the already existing ones and, in so doing, alters the game in unexpected turns. With this system players learn to play it gradually, from a basic version to the full game. What follows below are not the rules of the game, but a rough description of the situations it gaves way to:

LEVEL A: On this level, also known as Wear Phase, one plays to win, as in a conventional game. One of the players must lose for the other to win. It is a struggle between “I”, the subject, and “you”, the opponent, the other. The meaning of the game is to strip the opponent of her 6 pieces (also called Illusions), whilst keeping at least one of yours. The Illusions are played in rounds. When one loses a round, he also loses an Illusion. The game can thus take between six and eleven rounds. There are rules to play each round on the board, to accomplish your goals in the game, and to attack the oponent.

LEVEL B: This level is also called Flash. A little set of rules is added, so that a new situation in the game is created: The player who is losing finds herself in a very advantageous position to win the game in the next round. In other words, the closer you are to lose, the closer you get to win and vice versa. This dynamic might cause an on growing feeling of frustration in the players. Playing to win only leads to your own defeat. On the other hand, playing to lose would most likely will lead to the same result. Disillusion enters in this way an absurd loop and becomes a game that, the more you play it, the less you want to play it. This situation may very well lead to the abandonment of the game.

LEVEL C: If players do not abandon the game, they can opt for upgrading to the last level. Level C (also called Exit Way) offers a compensation game for those who lost by Flash at an early stage of the play, in one of the first rounds (the sooner Flash happens, the more intense the disillusion is). By way of this special compensation game, the players get the means to create their own Illusions and add them as pieces to play in the game. Although Disillusion’s absurd condition cannot be overcome, the rules of the game nonetheless open so that players can modify its dynamics to a certain extent.

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