Experience – Amaël de Betak

Scores Against Humanity Cards

As the theme for the final project of the class was experience, I wanted to create something which reflected my own experiences within the class. With each project, there was always one that would make us do something that would put us out of my comfort zone and require us to behave strangely in social environments. Something else which I wanted to do was combine every project them we had done so far into one.

This led me to the idea of Scores Against Humanity. The rules are similar to those of Cards Against Humanity; all players draw three cards from the score pile and select which player will be the initial judge. The round starts randomly picking a generic location using a wheel containing a pre-selected list of locations. Then, all players apart from the judge will select a score that they think fits the location and place it in front of the judge. He will then shuffle the cards in order to be impartial and select the score which he prefers. In order for the player whose score has been selected to earn the point, he must perform it in the location generated at the start of the round, after which he becomes judge and the process is repeated until one of the players reaches three points.

The inspiration for the game came from many different places. For one, the scores used in the game all originate from Yoko Ono’s Grapefruit which we read for class. I selected those which I thought were the easiest to execute in a public space without too much preparation, allowing for easier gameplay. I also took inspiration from Marcel Duchamp’s LHOOQ, which consisted of putting a mustache and goaty on the Joconde as well as writing LHOOQ at the bottom of the poster. I did something similar for the title of my game, for which I swapped the Cards with Scores from Cards Against Humanity. This also fits well as the scores are being performed in a public space and therefore could be seen as them going against humanity present in these environments. I also thought that the way in which The Institute was mixing a game with real-life was very interesting and I wanted to do the same for my own game, which led to the decision of performing the scores in a public space.

As I playtested my game, I found that my goal of making players feel discomfort was achieved as I could observe them being hesitant to perform the scores at first due to the fact they were being observed. However, they became more confident over the period of the game in the same way I did during the semester as we did more in more things in public spaces, going from the cardboard box play session to the parachute intervention, without forgetting about Ryan’s screaming score.

In conclusion, this game appropriated Yoko Ono’s scores, created interventions in public spaces and made the players experience discomfort, bringing all the different parts into one.

Show and Tell – Amaël de Betak

The game I chose for Show and Tell was Hollow Knight.

This choice was very simple for me to make as this was one of the only Indie games I got stuck into due to its beautiful old-school cartoon style, ambient music, and passive storytelling. The gameplay of the game itself is also something that kept me going as everything felt extremely fleshed out and smooth, giving it a quality even higher than that which can be seen in big studio games. The fact that all the DLC also come included in the game is incredible as it only costs 15 euros.

The extract which I chose to present was the descent into the abyss, which I thought was one of the most breathtaking moments in the story where the player truly understands their meaninglessness in the world’s story as they come across a large pile of corpses all resembling very closely the main character.

Appropriation – Amaël de Betak



My appropriation project came from the idea of making people create collaborative music using something that was not initially made to make music. I decided to appropriate a skateboard as the instrument as one of our guest speakers was telling us about his work which was all based around his habit of collecting toys. He took a look at Dylan’s longboard and started talking about the fact that the way he made art could be used for any hobby and used the skateboard example. Having tried to learn skateboarding since joining Northeastern and having already produced works using that aesthetic in 2D Fundamentals, I decided to try and use it for this project.

Another reason for the choice of the skateboard is that many people who do not skateboard themselves see it as an act of vandalism which tends to destroy the environment in which it is used. However, this is not the case, and skateboarding can even be considered as an act of appropriation in its self as it uses a pre-existing space and makes something new out of it by looking at it from a different angle.

My objective was to create procedural music through the use of a cadavre-exquis like approach where each participant would have to create a loop based on a metronome and the previous participant’s contribution using the skateboard. The previous loop acted as the end lines which are used in a cadavre-exquis to ensure coherence between the different parts.

My main inspiration from this piece was Duchamp’s The Fountain, as he uses an everyday object which many people would never associate with art and made one of the most recognizable pieces out of it. This idea of giving it a new life is linked to my own piece as the skateboard itself does not seem as though it could be used as an instrument, however, its different components all produce very varied sounds which could allow for diverse approaches when producing music with it.

I also took inspiration from the pieces Musical Chess and the Musical Tennis pieces as they also had this similar idea of creating music out of something which is not normally linked to it.

Overall, I was not entirely satisfied with the way in which the piece turned out as I came with the expectation that participants would use the different elements of the skateboard to create interesting sounds. However, they all took the same approach of using it as a percussion by knocking on the deck and scratching on its grip tape, even though I did show them the different possibilities prior to the recording.

Intervention – Amaël de Betak

My intervention consisted of having a friend and I playing a fighting game inside of the East Village elevators and inviting people to join us as they walked onto the lift. Our set-up was a chair in each back corner and a podium centered along the back wall, upon which the switch was placed with the spare controller.

The first objective of this score was to shock the people who would enter the lift, which was achieved through the choice of the environment in which the intervention occurred. The choice of the lift was made as, in East Village, students are forced to use them in order to get to their rooms or leave the building, meaning that there was a very high chance that we would run into people while intervening. We also decided to head into the lift at 20:30 as this was the time when most people would be using the elevators as they were heading either to or from dinner or the gym, for the most part, meaning there was quite a high amount of traffic. The shock factor was thanks to the fact that people do not really associate this means of locomotion to anything else than that, and therefore upon coming across people who were not using that space for that purpose, they could not help but be surprised.

The second objective was to give the people we came across a break from their day. Most students are busy for the majority of their days, and therefore giving them the opportunity to take a break felt like it would go well with the first objective of the intervention. In order to achieve this, we decided to invite them to join us in our game, allowing them to take their minds off of things for the brief time in which they were in the lift. Asking them to join us I think was crucial to get them to participate as I do not believe that anyone would have joined us of their own accord as the lift rides were too short for them to think of entering the game.

The inspiration for this intervention came from two different works. The first one was a piece by the Yes-Men, which we had briefly touched upon in class. I found their work very entertaining and therefore chose to look into more of their works in my free time. I found this intervention in which one of them faked being a member of a company which was linked with a chemical disaster and made a fake public announcement in which he said that the company would take full blame of the events and would help those affected by these events, which is the opposite response given by the real company. I felt like this was created in order to shock the audience as this is something people do not usually see as corporations usually look towards profit and simply try to put behind anything that could affect them negatively. This also created somewhat of a break from all of the negative news which we are fed on a daily basis and gave some sort of hope.

The other piece which I took inspiration from was the War Tweets intervention game which the creators had presented to us during one of our classes. The main point which I took from it was the audience participation, as the game could not really run if no one played it. I thought that bringing the audience into the intervention was somewhat necessary as it was don for them, and therefore making them take part in it would bring a whole new level of involvement.

Overall, the intervention was a great success. Many people decided to join us to play during their elevator trips, with some people even voluntarily missing their floors in order to play a bit longer. One person stayed as long as 15 minutes with us, and it reached a point where it felt like he was also a part of the intervention as he also invited people to join as they would step in before I would. Furthermore, I thought that even if people did not want to participate, I would still try to have an interaction with them in order to hopefully make their days a little better. The intervention had to end after an hour as an RA decided to kick us out of the elevators because we were apparently not allowed to have furniture inside of the lifts.

Score – Amaël de Betak

Polaroid Painting


Take a picture using a polaroid camera.

Carefully remove the plastic film covering the picture using a blade of some kind.

Take a paintbrush and use the ink to paint the picture on the back of the polaroid frame.



The three main themes behind this score are rebirth, repurposing and time.


The theme of rebirth comes from the action of taking the picture and ‘killing’ it by cutting through it and removing its life, which can be thought of as the blood representing the blood of the picture. Then, the image is given a new life through the action of remaking it through a different technique and somewhat preserving the medium.


The theme of repurposing comes from this idea of taking something we are given and making something else out of it. One of the ways in which I view this score is somehow fulfilling a desire. When you take a picture, you are not exactly sure as to how it is going to come out, especially on a polaroid camera where there is no display and you simply have to rely on the image which one can see in the viewfinder. Therefore, when the picture comes out there is a chance that we are not satisfied with the outcome. This score allows you to take that polaroid and make something you want out of it by repainting the image with the memory of how you wanted it to be and not necessarily how it came out.


The final theme is time, which is obtained through the process of using a new-ish medium, as polaroid cameras have now been long surpassed by digital cameras, in order to give birth to an ancient medium, in this case, painting which has been present since at least 39,000 BCE with the first painting of a disc found in El Castillo.


The idea behind this score came from an art project which I had worked on where I was exploring the theme of emptiness and unfulfillment and decided to explore the medium of the polaroid. I had created a tryptic with one overexposed polaroid which was completely white, one polaroid which was taken in the total darkness of our school’s darkroom and one which was simply the frame of the polaroid painted using the ink from a picture.