The work is part of a larger project focused on the investigation and documentation of Npc (Non-player character) routines in... Read More
The work is part of a larger project focused on the investigation and documentation of Npc (Non-player character) routines in video games. Here, the term routine is not only understood in the meaning of "technical programming", but also as a dimension that is parallel and beyond our approach, conceptualize and relate with virtual prosthesis and simulacral identities. I have used - and still use - three triple A open world video games as a field of testing and investigation: Grand Theft Auto V (2013), Fallout 4 (2015), Rage 2 (2019). In this type of games, Npc are interesting for a double reason: they represent a virtually real sociality and outsource different types of breakups with their intended function. They functionalize - and conceptualize - not as mere virtual counterpart of a simulated population, making explicit a real anthropological potential. What do Npc do in their life (expressed in seconds, minutes, hours)? Where do they go? In what way and why do they activate their behavior as opposed to the system that governs them? Are they subject to secret reactions and actions or do they only refer to their everyday life? And, in fact, how is this presumed everyday life configured? In a way, their daily routines and our relationship with their existence is often no different from the "ordinary" relationship between us human beings. Think, for example, of the big subways: interfaces, screens and extras of flesh, bone, blood and synapses splash - more and less quickly - side by side without questioning each other's wandering. On the other hand, on the more technical side, the Npcs often show that they do not respond (or even counteract, as the case may be) to the roles imposed on them by the system, whereas others seem seduced and subjected to them in a cycle of substantially infinite repetition.
The work consists in six different videos as a documentation of the behavior of this type of virtualized identity subject. As such, it is (and is) invested by a series of rhetoric and idealizations. The work is inspired by both theory and artistic practice. On the one hand, the question of the scholar W. J. T. Mitchell's question about the will of images, their organicity and their being alive and vital. On the other, the performance-routine of the artist Vito Acconci in his Following Piece (1969).
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