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  • 05.10.11

Robert Overweg Turns The Gritty Landscape Of Mafia II Into Surreal Art [Slideshow]

Dutch photographer Robert Overweg has already blown our minds with his improbably dazzling snapshots of glitches in first-person shooter games, like Half Life and Left for Dead.

Dutch photographer Robert Overweg has already blown our minds with his improbably dazzling snapshots of glitches in first-person shooter games, like Half Life and Left for Dead. Now, he’s up with a new series, Flying and Floating, which turns the gritty urban landscape of Mafia II into gorgeous, nonsensical compositions, full of fire escapes suspended in mid-air and missing car garages and building facades that disappear into the clouds. It’s what Dalí might’ve concocted had he used New York City as his canvas (only much cooler).

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Unlike Overweg’s earlier stuff, these photographs don’t depict programming errors. They just highlight the unexplored corners of 1940s- and ’50s-era Empire Bay, the vast, fictional city in which Mafia II is set. Overweg captured the images by abandoning the narrative of the game and instead hunting around for places where he could look through “the first layer of the architecture,” as he tells Co.Design in an email, and document the “strangeness and the design aspects which hide behind the facade.”

The photos are for sale. A limited-edition print costs 220 Euros to 1,400 Euros (about $315 to $2,000) depending on size, finish, and mount. Email him directly for a price list. And for our earlier coverage of Overweg’s work, go here.

About the author

Suzanne LaBarre is the editor of Co.Design. Previously, she was the online content director of Popular Science and has written for the New York Times, the New York Observer, Newsday, I.D.

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