Project title:
Missing Mississippi

//figurative documentary proposal
Texts (synopsis, script sample, director’s note, dramaturgy) // Diagrams // Collages // Sketches // UI, UX design // Video Guide
Design Academy Eindhoven, 2020
Collaborative project with Felix Noemayr and Martina Eddone

Research question: How do representations of ecosystems influence our understanding towards represented realities?

The aim of this project is to examine the complex impact of representations on our perception of ecosystems of any kind. A consecutive research question was raised: How can we enable empathy towards nonhuman agents through and within representation? The inquiry developed into the creation of our own representation: A fictional documentary proposal which is solely based on the already existing digital archive Mississippi. An Anthropocene River; a case study that is physically and culturally distant from us, thus it is our only resource for understanding the ecosystem of the river. The act of making a representation solely based on an existing representation is an extreme example of the deficiency of representation to sufficiently portrait reality.

By providing a fictional proposal instead of an actual documentary, we intend to enable a critical discussion on the level of representational influence. We look beyond the finished surface of representations and examine their inner structures, by using ourselves, in order to question underlying intents and voiced subjectivities that shape every reproduction of reality.

In alignment with the research goals, the created proposal places the river itself at the center of narration. With simulating a long-missing voice of the Mississippi (an act of empathetic acknowledgment), we aim to regard nonhuman agents as essential interlocutors in any human discourse on ecosystems.

Project website here.

Missing Mississippi virtual tour