1597 Seconds is a role play game about time and the aliveness of objects as well as how things become witnesses, and people become things.

Game Description:

The Institute of Mastering Time is running a training session for prospective employees. Employment at The Institute is dependent on advanced skills in optimal time management i.e. learning how to move time backwards, speed it up, and slow it down. Participants in this training session will be put through a series of exercises that will help them master time in order to get closer to eternal life. Eternal life is dependent on a crucial transformation – the ability to realize oneself as a thing, as material in a vast cycle of interconnectedness. Ultimately, this training session helps participants construct a material process to realize the future museum of life. Participants will concentrate on working in 26 Minutes time intervals, or 1597 seconds, the approximate amount of time it takes the human brain to maintain highly intense activity without additional stimulation or interruption.

Through exhibitions and participatory projects, Arseny Zhilyaev considers the relationship between art and social production/lived environments. The artist uses artistic, political, scientific, and museological histories to uncover and propose potential futures, exploring a productive space between fiction and non-fiction. Within his recent projects, Zhilyaev casts a revisionist lens on the heritage of Soviet museology. This particular role play game is inspired by the book Mastering Time as the Main Task of Organization of Labor by the Russian philosopher of the first third of the twentieth century, Valerian Muravyov.

Asya Volodina (b. 1983, Moscow) is a game designer, artist, and playwright. She co-authored the promenade-theatre show Normansk at Meyerhold Centre in Moscow, 2014. She has been a member of art collectives, Ladder to the Sky, Room 18, and Live Action Theatre among other groups. Since 2017, she has collaborated with artist Arseny Zhilyaev on role-play games. She lives and works in Moscow.

Arseny Zhilyaev
(b. 1984, Voronezh) is an artist based in Moscow and Venice. His projects examine the legacy of Soviet museology and museum in the philosophy of Russian Cosmism using the exhibition as a medium. Artist’s works have been shown at the biennales in Gwangju, Liverpool, Lyon and the Ljubljana Triennale as well as at exhibitions at Centre Pompidou, Palais de Tokyo, Paris; de Appel, Amsterdam; HKW, Berlin; Kadist Art Foundation, Paris and San Francisco. Zhilyaev graduated from Voronezh State University, Philosophical Faculty (2006); and MA International Programs, Valand School of Fine Arts, Goteborg, Sweden (2010). The artist has lectured and conducted master classes at MoMA, Brooklyn Museum, CUNY (New York), Tate Modern, Whitechapel (London), Princeton University (New Jersey), and others. He publishes articles in e-flux journal, Idea, Moscow Art Magazine, and others. Zhilyaev is an editor of an anthology Avant-Garde Museology (e-flux, University of Minnesota Press, V-a-c Press, 2015) and co-founder of Moscow Center for Experimental Museology.

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