Rayshawn Hughes

Artwork #4: Color Poker


Standard game of Texas Hold’Em

I kept track of everyone’s money using a notebook

Script / Statistics

Color Poker

How to Play

Objective: Get out of debt


  • If you are a female, you will make 80% of your earnings (i.e – $4 on a $5 win)
  • If you are a colored person, you will make 73% of your earnings (i.e – $73 on a $100 win)
  • If someone is a colored female, take 73% of the earnings first, then take 80% percent of that
  • If you go broke, you lose
  • Standard Poker rules

WIN = Colored must reach $52, White must reach $28


  • Everyone starts with $10
  • MIN BET: $2 / MAX BET: $10

Artist Statement

I was not sure what I wanted to create when I first heard the project details. I knew that I could not make a digital game given the time I had and my lack of experience. Therefore, I knew I had to make an analog game. My first idea was to use Monopoly and create something based on that. However, I could not get Monopoly in time, so I ended up using poker cards instead.

I had several sources of inspiration. First, I really liked “Room at the Top” that we played in class. I enjoy being able to play as different “races” and having unique abilities. In Color Poker, your race determines how much money you make on winnings. Also, I believe my work draws inspiration from Yoko Ono. Besides “Cut Piece”, “White Chess” is a favorite of mine. “White Chess” uses all the mechanics of chess, but her message on people and race comes from her decision to make all of the pieces white. With my game, none of the poker rules are changed; the amount of money someone earns changes based on their race. Lastly, my inspiration comes from having played games like “Privilege Walk”. Essentially, everyone begins in a line, and people move forward or backward based on answers to questions like race, gender, or sexuality. By playing Color Poker, it is clear to see how someone of color is disadvantaged compared to someone who is not of color.

When testing my game, as someone of color, I almost never won. However, I chose poker because the cards you are dealt are random, so everyone has the chance to win. It is just that it is harder to reach the end goal as someone of color because of your situation. I think that the game turned out well, and I see Color Poker as more of a performance than a game.



Final Project Idea: Monopoly Spin


For my final project, I am thinking of creating a board game that will show how being born into different races can affect your life situation.


The inspiration for my project was based on the game we played on Friday, “Room at the Top”. With that game, everyone was randomly assigned a home planet which gave them different amounts of influence  and goals. Not only was the game fun, but it caused the players to interact in different ways based on their needs. For my game, I want to do something similar.


The game will use most of the rules from Monopoly and the Monopoly board.

# of players: 2 – 4

There will be different races to belong to. Each race will have its own unique ability. Right now, I think there will be four races.
– Race 1: ability to roll the die to escape jail
– Race 2: make double the amount of money on property tax
– Race 3: ability to move an extra space per turn
– Race 4: makes double the amount of money on passing “GO”



Indie Show & Tell: The Cat in the Hijab



The player follows a cat wearing a hijab as she boards the subway on her daily commute. The game is a simple “point-and-click”. In the game, other characters will interact with you and you decide how to respond to them. Topics that are explored include diversity, inclusiveness, tolerance, racism, bigotry, sexism, Islamophobia, and homophobia.





In chapter 3, “Radical Political”, Schrank talks about how avant-garde can be used as a political tool to point out what is usually hidden like racism. He notes, “the avant-garde … attacks the cultural pillars of reality. To face these pillars is to face the very limits of language.” Essentially, visuals can be seen as a form of language . Avant-garde art is seen as nontraditional and unorthodox. With The Cat In The Hijab,  the artist uses a world of cats to portray issues people face today. Moreover, the gestures done by other characters in the game along with their dialogue clearly reveals the hidden undertones of the game.  It is the perfect blend of reality and fantasy.

Intervention – She’s NOT Your Toy




Artist Statement

Initially, I wanted to do my intervention on Twitter, playing a game similar to Mafia that would last for a week. Because I could not get the number of participants needed, I decided to create an intervention that can be done alone. The new intervention, She’s NOT Your Toy, takes place in the digital game, “Dead or Alive 5 Last Round” for the PlayStation 4.

The purpose of the intervention is to call attention to the sexualization and objectification of the female fighters in Dead or Alive.

The intervention was done over several hours in-game. I enter the 3D fighting game, Dead or Alive 5 Last Round, in order to call out other online users who use the female fighters in-game with a specialized message. I enter the game using my PSN ID, “Mr_Rayshawn” and look for online lobbies that had several people inside. The maximum number of players in one lobby is 8. Inside the lobby, I enter spectator mode and look to see if someone plays as a female character. If they do, using the game’s text messaging system, I proceed to type, “[female’s name] is NOT a toy to fulfill your personal sexual fantasy”. I continue this pattern until there are no more players in the lobby or I am kicked from the session.

My inspiration for this piece came from the video I saw in class of dead-in-iraq done by Joesph DeLappe. In his piece, he too decides to intervene in a digital space and uses the game’s text messaging system. Also, his intervention fits in the context of the space he uses; he uses a game about America’s Army to give a memorial to soldiers who died fighting the Iraqi war. The game, Dead or Alive, is a perfect example of sexualization and objectification of women in video games which continues to be a problem. Anita Sarkeesian, founder of Feminist Frequency, looked at Dead or Alive 5 Ultimate in her episode, “Women as Reward – Special DLC Mini-Episode”. Reading the transcript, she explains what “sex sells” means.  Essentially, when super-sexual DLC outfits are put on sale, she says it is the publishers and developers way of saying, “YES, these women do indeed exist primarily as toys to fulfill your personal sexual fantasy”. I chose to flip this statement because women are not sexual objects and it is meant to call out anyone who thinks they are.

The reactions during the intervention met my expectations. Either I was kicked after a short time, or I was called a variety of names for bringing attention to this subject.



Indie Game – Mount Your Friends


Mount Your Friends is a physics based competitive climbing game by Stegersaurus Software Inc.

This game is a lot of fun to play, but it is so much more fun to watch! I believe the character animations really define the game. The main game mode in Mount Your Friends is to “climb the goat” where you create a tower of contorted bodies atop a goat and the first person to run out of time loses. There are other game modes such as trying to throw your character the farthest distance. It it simple, fun, and packed with humor.




Appropriation: Straight Fluxx


“Straight Fluxx” is an appropriated game that uses material from the classic poker game “Texas Hold ’em” and the card game “Fluxx”.  The objective of the game is to be the first player to create a “straight hand combination” on the table using the “community cards”.


  • 1 deck of 52 playing cards
  • 1 deck of Fluxx



This game can be played with 2 to 6 players. In order to start the game, both the playing card deck and the Fluxx deck have to be shuffled.  Inside the Fluxx deck is a “Basic Rules” card which must be placed on the table at all times. Once the decks are shuffled, both decks are placed on the sides of the “Basic Rules” card on the table. Each player is then dealt 3 cards from the playing card deck and 2 playing cards or “community cards” are placed face up on the table.

When the game begins, as stated on the Fluxx “Basic Rules” card, a player draws one card from either deck and plays one card from their hand. This is subject to change as there are “new rule” cards in the Fluxx deck which changes how the game plays. For example, one “new rule” card says “Play 2” cards per turn. This adds a lot more variety to the game and can either speed things up or slow them down.

In order to win, a player must create a “straight hand combination” using the “community cards” on the table.  A “straight” means there are 5 cards in numerical order.  So, having a 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 set on the table would make a “straight”. When the game begins, there are only two “community cards” on the table. Players can play poker cards from their hand to add to the “community” pile or play Fluxx cards which will change the current rules or have some other effect on the game.


  • There is a hand limit of 3 (unless a new rule changes this)
  • There is a limit of 5 “community cards” on the table
  • If a person plays a playing card, they add the card to the middle. The person can choose to replace a card that is face up. If a person plays a Fluxx “Action” card, the card is discarded when the effect is over. If a person plays a Fluxx “New Rule” card, the card stays in play until another card in the same category is played.
  • You can only draw from one deck (i.e. if a “draw two” is in play, you can’t take one from each deck)


This is the paper prototype of “Straight Fluxx”. Here, I use paper cut-outs for the playing cards.

This is the final iteration of “Straight Fluxx”. Here is a completed game.


Iteration / Inspiration:

With my first iteration for this project, I had a completely different idea.  My first idea, “Lucky Chess”, used playing cards and chess. The goal of that game was to beat the other team using “Rock, Paper, Scissors” as the battle mechanic. Instead of using actual chess pieces, the playing cards were given different values to represent them. So, if some randomly drew a K from the deck, they would be the King from chess. I was really inspired by Yoko Ono’s “White Chess”. With Yoko Ono’s “White Chess”, she kept the mechanics the same but made all of the pieces white. By doing so, it made it harder to keep track of who owned which pieces. On a deeper level, her game connected with humanity in general. It made no sense for pieces on the board to go against each other since they were all the same. As humans, the conflicts we have among ourselves make no sense because we too are all the same. “Lucky Chess” was meant to be a commentary on the class structure in our society. Those with more wealth and power have special privileges that those with less do not. Also, no one gets to pick the class they belong to when they are born. I wanted to imitate this with the random drawing of the playing cards. Whatever card you had, you were stuck with it. Also, players with higher value cards like the queen were inherently stronger than lower value cards such as the pawn.

From the first play-test, it was clear that the game was a bit too complicated and could better appropriate chess if actual chess pieces were used.  Therefore, I decided to scrap the idea and eventually came up with “Straight Fluxx”. It is much simpler than “Lucky Chess”, it does not need a large group of people to play it, and it directly appropriates both decks. I believe it was a better product since I did not focus so much on the message but on the gameplay.

Appropriation 1st Iteration – Lucky Chess

# of players : 16

Overview: “Lucky Chess” takes the components of traditional chess and adds a touch of randomness to spice things up. The game aims to be a commentary on the class structure of our society.


  • 2 decks of playing cards

Class Structure [chess]:

  • King
  • Major pieces (queen and rook)
  • Minor pieces (bishop and knight)
  • Pawns


  • There should be 8 players on each team [1 king, 1 queen, 1 rook, 5 pawns]
  • The roles correspond to the cards as follows:
    • King = K
    • Queen = Q
    • Rook = J
    • Pawns = any numbered card


  • Remove any card that is not used in “Lucky Chess” from the playing decks
  • Shuffle the remaining cards and deal them to each player on the team face down. When everyone is dealt a card, players should check their cards and reveal their roles to their team only.
  • Both teams face each other from opposite sides of the room. Whoever is the king and queen MUST sit in chairs. Everyone else should stand away from them
  • The winning conditions are:
    • Beat the opposing king OR
    • Beat all of the other players on the opposing team


  • Every turn, the king will pick someone who will represent their team
  • The players who are picked must step forward and reveal their roles to each other.
  • Whoever loses “Rock, Paper, Scissors” will be eliminated from the game.
  • The structure for ‘Rock, Paper, Scissors” differs depending on who is going against each other.
    • King = If facing a King, then it best 2 out of 3. Everyone else, he only needs to win once.
    • Queen / Rook = If facing a King, Queen, or Rook, then it best 2 out of 3. Everyone else, they only need to win once.
    • Pawns = If facing a King, Queen, or Rook, then it best 3 out of 5. Against pawns, then it is 2 out of 3.
  • At any point,  a player can challenge the current King on their team for their position.  When this happens, that player and the king must step forward. If the player wins, they become the new king and the old one becomes a pawn. If the king wins, they remain king and the player is killed. The rules for going against different classes still apply.


Appropriation Show and Tell: “Look What You Made Me Do”

Appropriation can be found in many music videos and remixes. A recent example of a music video that uses appropriated material is Taylor Swift’s “Look What You Made Me Do”.

Swift borrows the melody from the 1991 song called “I’m Too Sexy” by Right Said Fred. This can be heard after Swift says “ooh” in the beginning of the song and the chorus begins. Interestingly, the group did not know that Taylor Swift used their melody until after the song was released. However, she did give them credit by having them be co-songwriters on the song.

Also, many of the shots in Swift’s music video are similar to shots in other music videos by different artists. Here are some:

Michael Jackson’s “Thriller”

Katy Perry’s “This Is How We Do”

Madonna’s “What It Feels Like For a Girl”

Kylie Minogue’s “All The Lovers”

Paper Piece I – “Mixed Feelings”


Find someone nearby to make a confession to
Write your feelings about them on a piece of paper
Rip up the paper when you finish

Create a pile somewhere to add your scraps to
When you are done, release your feelings

Artist Statement:

The score Mixed Feelings was inspired by a couple of different things.  The structure of the score was inspired by some of the works done by Yoko Ono in Grapefruit, yet the subject of the score was inspired by my interactions with other people in my life and the nervousness people have towards one another.

Trying to stay in line with the style of Ono’s scores in Grapefruit, I imitated the sentence structures she used. For example, in her scores, most of the sentences begin with an action such as “Do X“.  In turn, my score follows that style. I did not know if I wanted to make this score for a group or for the individual.  In the end, I decided that I would make the language targeted to an individual, but the score can be expanded to an infinite number of people. So, I made changes to some of the lines; the last line used to say “When we are done, release our feelings” but now says “When you are done, release your feelings.” I also imitated the vagueness that is a trademark of her scores such as in City Piece which instructs a person to walk around the city with an empty baby stroller. The phrase “release your feelings” is super vague and can be interpreted in many ways. While I pictured someone discarding the pile, in class, someone in the class took that to mean smashing the pile with their hammer!

As far as the subject of the score, I was focused on people’s interactions with one another. There are so many things which stop people from talking to each other and sharing how they really feel. I know that talking to new people can be really stressful. Something that should be so simple can be so hard. So, I wanted to make a score that can address this issue.

After enacting the score in class, I was really pleased by how the participants reacted. The best part was when I said that they would have to write a confession to the person that they chose. Not knowing if they would be forced to give their paper to the person, almost everyone became uncomfortable. There was no time limit, so I just waited until everyone generally agreed that they were done. When it came time to rip the paper, the group gave a collective sigh of relief.  I think that I would interesting to see what the experience would be like if the whole school shared their “mixed feelings”.

Below are some photos from my own enactment of the score.

Writing the letter

Ripping the letter