Zorop connected over 230 groups
of people who didn't know each other
in 12 hours of play at the 01SJ Biennial art + tech festival,
in San Jose, California, on September 17 and 18, 2010.
40 people from the arts, urban game
and general community took to the streets
and wearing colorful "Zoropathian" scarves, collected "Affinities" – things strangers found they had in common.
The Zoropathians beamed each Affinity
directly to Zorop Prime, where a 3D display
of the facts and feelings of these connections grew in real time.
The quixotic goal was to catalyze world peace,
to transform the meme by sparking a "critical mass" of deep connections among strangers within a tight geographical and temporal space. By the project's calculation, the effort reached 95% World Peace Inevitability.
More practically, Zorop transformed
the public spaces of the 01SJ
With simple narrative props and a playful yet meaningful approach, Zorop catalyzed fun at the festival. People deeply enjoyed connecting and being connected, and completing their personal experience by seeing how it fit into the larger "fabric of connection" at 01SJ.
Zorop is ready to grow into
new spaces and take new forms
in its quest to transform public spaces into friendlier places, encourage communities to form deeper roots, and "break the ice" at social and cultural events worldwide . . . as it continues to catalyze reflection on how individual connections collectively weave our social fabric and, ultimately, world peace.
Zoropathic connections transcend the physical world. Connect and learn more about ZOROP:
ZOROP main site
ZOROP Progress (real-time data summary)
ZOROP Gallery of Connections
ZOROP on Facebook http://facebook.com/pages/Zorop/141140772593618
@ZoropPrime on Twitter
ZOROP at 01SJ
ZER01 has commissioned ZOROP for the 3rd 01SJ Biennial, and presents it with the support of the James Irvine Foundation.
About the Artists
Ken Eklund (@writerguygames) is a game designer and thought leader in the area of serious games and collaborative gameplay for the social good. He is the creator of the award-winning World Without Oil, a landmark massively collaborative alternate reality game, and was team lead on EVOKE, "a ten-week crash course on changing the world” for the World Bank Institute. Eklund lives in San Jose, CA.
Annette Mees (@annettemees) is an artist and theatre maker. She makes stories that create interactions between people and places, combining technology, live performance and theatre, always making the audience the hero. Mees is part of Coney, an agency for adventure and play, and is director of The Performance Lab, an ensemble dedicated to deepening audience engagement in original settings. She is co-artistic director on Interludes, a cross-disciplinary project developing new ways of telling stories using technology and performance. She was recently awarded the WGGB Theatre Encouragement Award for her work with writers and was also named one of the artists to watch in 2009 by Courvoisier's Future 500.
Two years ago Ken and Annette met as strangers on a sidewalk in New York. It turned out they were both looking for the same party. They have talked about things they have in common ever since.
Eklund and Mees with Devon Bella (center), curatorial assistant at 01SJ,
in Zoropathian scarves ￼
Ken Eklund, ZOROP
Annette Mees, ZOROP
Jaime Austin, ZER01