Horror Vacui, Come Play With Us!

June 10, 2015

‘Come and play with us. Come and play with us, Danny. Forever… and ever… and ever’.  Remember the terrifying scene with the Grady twins in Stanley Kubrick’s hit 1980s horror film The Shining? Well, nothing to be scared, playing with us is not quite as scary as the unforgettable Kubrick’s scene, but here comes horror: Horror Vacui.

In visual arts, horror vacui (from Latin “fear of empty space”) is the filling of the entire surface of a space or an artwork with detail. And, Horror Vacui is the name given to an urban game developed by Node’s Director, Perla Montelongo, together with street game designer and philosopher, Viktor Bëdo for Tacit Dimension.

Horror Vacui is a visual street game about creating landscapes devoid of living persons. Players are asked to  create a visual impression of a deserted urban landscape with the camera of their mobile phones and to fight against players who are trying to populate these landscapes. Players experience the contrast between bustling affairs and emptiness and gain tacit knowledge about the concept of void.

In Horror Vacui, the establishment of the Void rules the world. The Void Agents patrol the cities to reproduce landscapes devoid of any human beings. Yet there still exist people with a severe horror vacui syndrome, the Void Phobics. They are driven by the need to sabotage the efforts of the Void Agents to record deserted landscapes. The fight of these two forces for visual dominance never stops!

The game was commissioned by the exhibition Tomrom, curated by ex Node’s resident curator, Maria Veie, at Sandefjord Arts Forum, Norway, and premiered on May 9th 2015 in Sandefjord. Here the instructions of the game and some pictures:

 

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The real horror…

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