The Travelling Hand: A Ludic Dream Across the Sea
The self, in two halves, moves through space. The space is a carpet, fragments arranged from memory.
The Waking self, as it moves has the power to re-order its environment. It can make changes at the material level. The Dreaming self, on the other hand, sees a different world itself, more detailed, an environment loaded with myth and time, but cannot interact directly with the physical world. It shapes the imagination of how the world ought to be.
The game proceeds as a co-op, the dreaming self revealing different aspects of a mysterious narrative hidden in the world to the waking self, who investigates and pieces together a fresco, a carpet.
The broken narrative draws on a series of events beginning in the 17th Century, when the Queen Ketevan of Georgia was imprisoned and tortured to death in Shiraz, Iran by Shah Abbas I. Her remains were, through a combination of coincidence and will, brought by a monk to the Augustinian complex in Old Goa, India and remains buried there to this day. In 1989, Georgian film-maker Rezo Tabukashvili, conducted an investigation into the story, in a hope to revive the spirit of the martyr queen and initiated an excavation by the Archaeological Survey of India at the ruined site to recover the remains. Unfortunately, the film-maker passed away before any significant discoveries were made, but the excavation continues. In 2010, Gayatri Kodikal travelled to Georgia from India to further the trail of Rezo’s investigation and collected material related to the story.
The game exists somewhere between these elliptical set of events and the investigative spirit in the narrative. Structured as a spatial, found-object experience, different conceptual motifs from the various time-periods in the story are meshed together to form a game-world. The fragmented footage found in the game world are of Rezo’s hunting trip in the Soviet Union.
The prototype on display is only a small fragment of this game-world.