OUROBORUM launched at YARAT Contemporary Art Centre, video room

OUROBORUM launched at YARAT Contemporary Art Centre, video room

Commissioned by YARAT Contemporary Art Space, A Drop of Sky is the 3rd Public Art Festival in Baku and will run 13 June - 5 October 2015.

OUROBORUM created by Nazrin Mammadova is an online game, an iOS app, and an art installation - a kinetic sculpture and reincarnation of classical snake game.

OUROBORUM is a fictional universe that includes a cyclical and related to each other parallel worlds in which ever comes the 'Ouroboros'. The Ouroboros is an ancient symbol depicting a serpent or dragon eating its own tail from the Greek word for the mythological tail biting snake. The snake is a common symbol for the cycle of life and renewal. The game provides an astute commentary on the vast construction occurring in Baku, which is undergoing a fast process of reinvention. Aesthetically OUROBORUM employs Islamic geometry common to both traditional and modern Azerbaijani architectural and cultural motifs and draws from carpet design, textiles and jewelry, and is accompanied by artificially created sounds inspired by elements taken from Azerbaijani traditional musical instruments. The audio and visual sensation of the game borrow from a pattern language that is both systematic and irregular and intended to contrast tradition with new technologies and gaming culture. OUROBORUM aspects include play as generally a voluntary act, executed but not limited to certain fixed limits of time and place and mentally and physically challenging, and is separated from reality through a sanctioned play space and through agreed but not limited upon fantasy or rule set.

Criticality in OUROBORUM can be fostered in order to question an aspect of game's "content", or an aspect of play conceptual scenario's function that might otherwise be considered a given or necessary. Criticality in OUROBORUM can provide an essential viewpoint or an analytical framework. OUROBORUM is an attempt to use critical play as an approach to create a platform of rules and tools by which to examine a specific issue- rules and tools that are relevant to the issue itself thought presented in an abstract manner of expression. Critical play in OUROBORUM is characterized by a careful examination of social, cultural, political and even personal themes that function as alternates to popular play spaces. The challenge is to find ways to make compelling , complex environment using the intricacies of critical thinking to offer novel possibilities in games and for a wide range of players.

The app OUROBORUM is available free for download form App store ( iTunes) for all iOS devices.

Artist/Collaborators: Nazrin Mammadova, Anton Filatov, Ernest Yakovlev.

Nazrin Mammadova (b.1989, Kutaisi, Georgia) is a graduate of the Eurasian Diplomatic Academy in Azerbaijan and holds a BA (Hons) from the British Higher School of Art and Design Moscow, Russia. She became a member of the Azerbaijan Photographers' Union in 2012 and has been an active member of the YARAT Coordinating Board since 2012. Recent exhibitions include A Time for Dreams, 4th Moscow International Biennale for Young Art, MMOMA, Moscow, Russia; GRID Photo Festival, Vondel CS, Amsterdam, Netherlands; and 16th edition of the Sharjah Islamic Arts Festival, Sharjah Art Museum, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates (all 2014). In 2014 Mammadova completed a residency at the Delfina Foundation in London. She currently lives and works in Baku.

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