2021, The Middle of Nowhere

Text quest for mobile devices, installation.

The Middle of Nowhere is a game based on stories that happened to two unbound people, at different times and places. The first one is about the Vyacheslav Kurilov high-profile escape from the USSR. He was an oceanologist who dared to jump off a cruise liner in the Pacific Ocean hoping to reach the nearest island to apply for political asylum. The second one is the story of Charles Darwin’s voluntary isolation in his home for forty years, where he wrote major works while overcoming his own insecurities and an unknown illness.

What unites these stories is the encounter with existential choices that each person is forced to make alone, experiencing the limits of his or her own abilities.  Resonances and intersections within the private life paths become the basis for uniting the stories into a united narrative. These intersections allow the stories to be threaded onto one another and create a new interpretation, thus overcoming their individual insularity.

As an artist I am concerned with the process of experiencing the state of uncertainty and limitation of possibilities that people face. Oppositions that are actualized within the game space often constitute the basis of internal conflict: body — mentality, possible — unattainable, illness — health, freedom — restriction, personal — political, willingness to take risks — need for security, inner tension — tranquility.

The game I propose to play is a one-player text quest. It offers immersive experience where the player has to make choices in order to move through the universe of the game. The quest can be played from a mobile device or PC, and can be accessed via a QR code or link.