DIRTSCRAPER is a theorized landscape of urban development living and dying within a game engine. Originally presented as an immersive interactive installation, this sample shows it in an online setting as a generative artwork where residents of a “smart architecture” act as informal narrators. As the formation of DIRTSCRAPER revolves through its cyclical feature film-length lifespan, a variety of myths emerge. Members from the virtual community tell the tale of their surroundings, relationships, and mental health in an attempt to quell the constant noise of their precarious circumstances. It looks past archetypes of future utopias, turning instead to the corrosion of an apocryphal society. Taken as a whole, this artwork emulates a collective body that has been subjected to the inner workings of a gridded simulation: housing blocks are overrun by industry, residents are displaced, the individual withers. What remains is the story of a constantly kinetic city and the people that persist as inhabitants.
Text by Porpentine Charity Heartscape. Programming by Mark Fingerhut, additional programming by Oren Shoham. Music and sound design by John Also Bennett. Additional graphics by Brandon Blommaert, Eric Carlson, and Brenna Murphy.