Rafael Fajardo
Director, SWEAT collaborative
Associate Professor,
Emergent Digital Practices
University of Denver


Projects: SWEAT

I am the founding director of SWEAT, a loose collaborative that makes socially conscious videogames. It explores the poetics of interactivity, critiques and deploys electronic media, and comments on cultural realities.

The organization of SWEAT is itself a project. There are no “employees” in the traditional sense. The participants receive an ownership stake in what we create, they receive SWEAT equity. We leverage the collaboration to enable us to make work that is more ambitious in scale than we could produce individually. There is an open exchange of knowledge and expertise, with collaborators challenged to push beyond their zones of comfort. This is an innovation in how to organize a game project. Game development typically follows a dictatorial model of production. With SWEAT, we are exploring the viability of open-source collaborative development for videogames. We have successfully completed and shipped two titles and are developing several more. In addition, we have begun to explore the creation of software technologies that promise to further democratize the process of videogame development.

I was invited to speak about the collaborative and our working methods at the Image+Space+Object workshop organized collectively by the AIGA, Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design, and High Ground, in 2004.

SWEAT has a web presence at www.sudor.net where you can find more details about its history.