The Other Market

The OTHER Market

The OTHER Market experience invites participants to (re)think objects—and ensembles of objects—in ways that have nothing to do with consumerism or status. It requires a setting or context in which  players/participants have access to interesting objects—a flea or antique market, for example.

Years ago, or years from now, a vibrant market exists where people come to exchange objects and stories that matter. The once market was/will be the beating heart of the community building and renewing bonds of social reciprocity across all peoples.  It was/will be as you might imagine… a market filled with myriad stalls displaying all manner of objects, fantastic and mundane. The noise of seemingly endless barter and conversation fills the air and all the senses are alive to the rich sights, sounds and material opulence of the surroundings.

We all go to this market looking for something (some THING) that might change us; bring us happiness or pride, friendship or love, insight or peace. These things make us; they bind us… they become us.

Come to The Other Market and find…


Participants play in teams of three as the EARS, the EYES or the HANDS. A minimum of 3 teams play together.

The EARS are equipped with an “experimental detection device” called the SEEKER. They explore a real market context using this device to pick up different story fragments that float, ghost-like, in the air and are transmitted to their head phones as they explore the space. The stories evoke possible, complex relations with objects and objecthood, and each one ends with an open-ended quest/clue related to the story.

The EARS retell the stories that they have heard to the EYES on their team. The EYES then use the very open-ended “clue” at the end of the stories to inspire a photo which they take with their Polaroid camera in the market. They take this photo back to the HANDS at the team base table.

In consultation with the other people on their team, the HANDS choose, over the course of the game, a limited selection of the photos taken by their EYES. (They also have opportunities to exchange photos with the other teams.) This curated collection of photos suggests an ESSENCE, and the HANDS are, meanwhile, tasked with crafting, with the paper and tools at the table, an “essential object” that expresses this object-essence.

After three rounds, the game concludes with each team presenting the unique and compelling story behind their collection to the other teams.

The OTHER Market was presented at ANTEISM in Montreal, Quebec on April 22, 2023 and in Greenwich Market in London, UK in November 2023 as part of a collaboration with Greenwich University.

Sound Files

The following audio clips offer some samples of the ghost-like story fragments that the ears hear.

English Sound Files
French Sound Files

The Loot Garden

The OTHER Market requires a setting or context in which  players/participants have access to interesting objects.

For its first public production in Montreal, we decided to put together a special art-market, The Loot Garden, to provide the physical and social context for the game. The art market was curated and organized by Adam Mbowe, Tanya Dean, and the Montreal game team, including Nelly Blanken, Emem Etti, Marie Leblanc Flanagan and Lee Wilkins, Nico Holtzman, Levana Katz, Adia Lily Lee, Oldin, Muddmudd, Myriam Simard Parent, Annie Tate, Ava Wright and Dan Yang. 

The Loot Garden Market was supported by an Aid to Research Related Activities (ARRE) grant awarded by Concordia University.

The Other Market in London!

On Saturday November 11, 2023, a slightly adapted version of The Other Market ran in Greenwich Market in London. The original market dates from around 1700 and it is in a busy area near Greenwich University. The event was part of  the “Do As You’re Told” symposium, itself part of the larger Sound and Image festival at Greenwich University.

The game base was in the Coach and Horses pub within the market itself. From their base tables at the pub, players ventured out into the market to listen for story fragments and to identify objects that they wanted to photograph. They then returned to the cozy environment in the pub to discuss, arrange and, ultimately, tell stories together.

One of the new features in this version of the game was that players found letters addressed to each role on the table when they began.  These replaced staff members explaining the equipment and left the players more autonomous. It also meant that players got to share and discuss the letters with the other members in their team as a kind of introductory sharing activity.

Setting up at the Coach and Horses in Greenwich Market

In order, these photos depict: the exterior of the Coach and Horses pub where the game took place; JoDee setting up; the table layout in London; Don preparing the Seeker interfaces; our game mistress; Valbona, and Rosie, the London Rabbit.

Greenwich Market

These photos depict several of the market stalls around the event, as well as a seller.

Teams Playing in the Market

These photos show the teams playing in the market.

Playing in the Pub

Team activity back in the pub.


Finally, the storytelling finale!