“Entertainment masks the true complexity of play: their disorderliness, painfulness, perversion, and queer essence.“ – Bonnie Ruberg: No Fun
Evergrande, also known as the Chinese Lehman Brothers, sways above the abyss of bankruptcy. Other abandoned houses, like the ones from Kai Caemmerer photographs, become the backdrop in an absurd drama about an inflated future. Once again, in another part of the planet, another gamepad in the hands of a new player. They fulfill their function like the concave city models, until someone gets bored of shooting the endless waves of Russians, Arabs or Chinese, and finds a way to reach the mysterious land, called out of map.
The middle-class dream about housing, becomes a poorly textured, low poly version of itself, and it is now necessary to consider every step. The firm geometry of the houses and streets becomes an illusion and the playing time seems to have gotten stuck in a loop. The hyper realistic rifle positioned in the center of the screen, now without a target, transformed into a symbol of an impotent geek masculinity.
There is a temporary error (Glitch) in this landscape of disintegrating phallic high-rises that are lacking purpose. The DIY gaming set up has turned inside out. The player, usually positioned in the center, has been placed outside to undertake an aimless pilgrimage through a mysterious queer narrative.
The town square has been occupied by Olga. She tells the story about of a woman disappointed by her home country, men, work, colleagues, friends, life in capitalism. She tells the story to the listener and her daughter. They slowly blend into one, and are told not to ever trust anyone. Conflicts are dealt with quickly and without unnecessary bullshit here. In the dark alleys, we see the fights of figures so famous that we can’t even recall who they are and where we know them from. The search in memory is, once again, stopped by the blinding flash in the sky. A massive surge of pressure breaks the remaining windows, and the flare sets on fire everything in its way. Restart. And all the parts of the set are back in their place.
With its first public appearance at Jelení Gallery, the modular collective No Fun starts its long-term program of exhibitions, online presentations, lectures, and workshops. These endeavors aim to close the gap between artist-made videogames and the general public. Its name, inspired by the eponymous essay written by the game theoretician and developer Bonnie Ruberg, provides an imaginary hint to the rigid binary videogame discourse, dividing them into fun and serious games. Currently, the collective consists of: Lála Myslíková, Alex Petrova, Markéta Soukupová, Ondřej Trhoň, and Max Vajt.