Val, a young scavenger with a strange medical condition, navigates the layers of the city of Pericardia. Val feels a kinship with Pericardia: burdened with an autoimmune disorder that causes architecture to exude from the sufferer’s body, Val blends in with the junk towers at the outskirts of a city on the verge of collapse. A chance encounter with an exuberant member of the city’s Civil Corps named Entri sees Val thrown into the ranks of the Pericardia Civil Corps when it turns out Val’s illness can repair the city’s ancient, malfunctioning infrastructure on the spot. Val struggles to find a sense of purpose and self-worth after a life of isolation, as Entri must show just how important Val is to the city’s survival.
Pericardia explores the hazards and possibilities of starting over, touching on illness, imagined worlds, and the ways that people and places grow one another.
Ethan Gould is a graduate of the University of Rochester and a member of the Visual Narrative class of 2018. He started off as a student of neuroscience but after an uncanny reaction to a work of fiction (screaming with abandon during a screening of “Communion”), he focused on speculative fiction, the gothic impulse, and the origins of narrative. Immediately upon graduation, he became a puppeteer. For the past ten years Ethan has worked as visual and performative artist, organizer and curator. His work centers on the weird, poorly policed border between the actual and fantasy, fiction and fact, the past and the future, and the virtual and the real. He has presented with TEDx, at academic conferences, and at The Observatory where he co-curated events and exhibitions on the intersections between art and science. He is part of the Hollow Earth Society, an arts group dedicated to exploring the depths of the unseen world with writing, performance, illustration, and lots of commas. He lives in Brooklyn.