Habiba El-Sayed


A  vehicle for narrative, video games provide an arguably far more immersive way to tell stories than most forms of traditional media. They allow us to explore complex and sometimes even difficult subject matter in playful and comforting ways.  Over the years these narratives have become increasingly diverse,  however many video games still rely on stereotypes, saviour complexes and colonial themes.
  As game developers and artists, it is our responsibility to critically examine who’s stories we tell and how we tell them. That is why Unstolen does not posit the player as someone who has come to save a world and its inhabitants, rather the player is there to explore and assist with a celebration through the completion of minigames and returning talismans. 
A cut-scene in the beginning of the game will place me in the narrative as an observer who connected with the object at a museum. Drawn to it’s communal and architectural form, I attempted to learn more about it. However, looting has made the object’s history hard to pinpoint and left open to misinterpretation. As a Guyanese-Egyptian person, colonialism, looting and the literal objectification of our bodies hits very close to home. I began to connect to the object on a more personal level and hope to respectfully approach House Group Effigy as a way to tell this shared story.

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The game consists of 5 levels that represent the things that cannot be stolen from a culture. Each level will consist of a mini game that are AR/VR interactable. These levels are still in development but click the GIFs for some key themes!


An ever-expanding table, passed down recipes, abundance.


Once All 4 main areas are cleared, the level in the centre of the map will unlock, allowing the player to enter the underworld. More challenging mini games that can be completed with the help of game characters met along the way. 


Vessels for stories, mythologies, and familial tales.

House Effigy Group ( 300 BCE - 300 CE) by unknown maker(s) Jalisco or Colima culture, Jalisco, Mexico, earthenware


Mending the Museum (2023)
Workshop Series:
   Narrative Charm
   Blackout Poetry
   Play it Forward
   Cloning and Paper Clay


About the Collective
Members of the Collective

Mending the Museum is a collaborative duo comprised of Karina Román Justo and Camila Salcedo. Together, their intent is to work as a bridge between artists, communities, regional museums, and craft objects from their collections, to reflect on ancestry and speculative futures within the framework of cultural belonging.

For all inquires, please email mendingthemuseum@gmail.com

Brand identity, website design and development by Natasha Whyte-Gray, 2023.