Water on Mars


softworking, Kunsthochschule Kassel 2017

Water on Mars, previously 007 as the ID of a secret agent from the British foreign surveillance service, also known as James Bond, an iconic character who summarizes the male idol of the nineties: cool, untouchable, muscular, simply without any imperfections


Water on Mars is also an online multiplayer game that uses the author's body as a planet to be explored.

As an artist, I always lose control of how my work is approached as soon as I release it. There are specific ways of predetermining the possibilities of interaction, some vaguer like a code of behavior for visitors in a gallery, others more strict as the input recognition code of a game. I see these rulesets as part of the work.

In Water on Mars, I make a photogrammetric scan of my naked body accessible for strangers of the interweb and those visiting the exhibition space (if there is one).

With up to 9 other visitors, you can walk and jump on and inside this algorithmic interpretation of myself. But not more, these directional movements are the only signals accepted by the game's mechanics.
As you can only roam and explore, Water on Mars locates in the walking-simulators' tradition. Consequently, the idea of points, right and wrong, measuring and comparing the different ways of interacting, furthermore, the competition is removed.
This removing of competitiveness is crucial since it is a work of the body, exposing and presenting a human body.

The first one is accessible by downloading the game on its page. Via online servers, you can join an open game that has to be hosted by someone who downloaded the game as well, or you can start a game by yourself.

Making it downloadable, I want to offer the chance to have an intimate online connection with only you while sitting in a self-chosen space. And with the possibility of meeting others on purpose and by accident.
There are two modes of playing Water on Mars.

The second mode is a local setup in an art exhibition, gallery, or the like. As those spaces are publicly approachable, and therefore more crowded, the setup contains virtual glasses and headphones to create a more intimate connection. Depending on the specific setup, it can be connected to the online servers or running on a local area network only.