Every Wednesday, even when it is dark and rainy and storm doris is coming over for a drink, itching for more shall appear like a piece of rain dripping down you neck running down your spine and into the deep and endless puddle of raindrops. you look into that puddle. who am i? what am i? where am i? you, my friend are in the land of itching for more, ohhhhhhhhh yeah. This week, long titled packing game: Packing Up the Rest of Your Stuff on the Last Day at Your Old Apartment
Packing Up the Rest of Your Stuff on the Last Day at Your Old Apartment, by turnfollow, is a masterpiece in creating a space, of an everyday situation. As you may have guessed by the subtle title, Packing Up places you in an old apartment, packing up your last remaining belongings. The sun beats down from the window, sun beams dancing through sparkles of dust.
Packing up presents you with an interesting problem, what do you leave behind? You have limited space and try as you might, you can’t pack everything in your small cardboard boxes. Your apartment is littered with small objects: pillows, empty bottles, artwork, plants, niche band posters.
This sparse density expertly crafted by turnfollow is one of a few things that turns this into an old apartment instead of a room of objects, another being the tiny tiny details that pervade the apartment: a crumbling wall, scuff marks on the wall, broken blinds and a believable outside world. Missing drawer knobs and avacados add to the character behind the camera.
This is what Packing Up is really about. The space tells the story of the character — it is lived in, falling apart, full of telltale signs and small stories about each object — a plant picked up from a ukrainian village, a piece of art from your mother all contributes towards the character packing up his apartment.
Through the sunbeams and posters flapping in the wind from the fan, you begin to empathise with the character. Emptying a room of yourself is a process that everyone has to do at one point in your life. Packing Up captures the melancholy sadness of such a task through their small apartment.
Real world limitations, sun beating down on your back, dust and dirt on the walls, favourite pillows and fond feelings towards plants create somewhere you don’t want to leave. I taped up the final boxes with reluctance, wandering the empty apartment, staring at shelves once populated, now left for the dust.
Packing Up the Rest of Your Stuff on the Last Day at Your Old Apartment is pay-what-you-want, available here
p.s. I wrote a companion piece to this on turnfollow’s use of space both within this game and one of their previous pieces, Little Party. Read it here