Spike Island

Sophie Warren and Jonathan Mosley with Can AltayRogue Game

8 to 30 September 2012

Rogue Game is an ongoing project devised by Bristol-based artist/architect collaboration Sophie Warren and Jonathan Mosley with Turkish artist Can Altay. The game brings together three different sports staged simultaneously in the same arena, with each game played according to its own rules. In doing so, Rogue Game constructs a setting that gives rise to moments of improvisation, subversion, ingenuity and chance, proposing itself as a metaphor for how we might share the urban realm.

Within the zone of play, the markings of multiple game courts — here five-a-side football, basketball and volleyball — are transplanted into the gallery, introducing the architecture of the multipurpose sports hall into the space. Through this simple overlaying of time and space, players must negotiate their own game and those of others, moving between individual and collective tactics. As Rogue Game is played, the struggle between the three games and their players begins to exchange known rules for new, ever-changing strategies, through which a novel gaming instinct emerges. Scheduled matches between invited sports teams take place each Saturday afternoon during the exhibition; at other times visitors are invited to take part themselves on the ‘court’.

This hybrid work sees the game evolving and mutating according to each location in which it is realised. Warren and Mosley, both Spike Island studio holders, originally conceived Rogue Game with Altay during his residency here in 2007. The project has since been produced at The Showroom in London, Smart Project Space in Amsterdam and Casco in Utrecht. At Spike Island, the artists configure the entire gallery space as an immersive environment of play, which includes newly commissioned works.

By entering into Rogue Game, participants take on multi-faced roles, moving fluidly between art audience, sports spectator and player. As these positions shift, we are invited to consider what it means to be in or out of position, on or off the pitch, following or not following the rules. The gallery is presented as a space for spectacle and action, a setting for new communities to come together and for developing alternative frameworks for co-habitation through the informal and unplanned possibilities of play.

Rogue Game matches with live commentary and video editing take place on the following dates:

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