Paolo Pedercini, "Molleindustria: Video Games at the End of Capitalism"

Saturday, October 15, 2022, 5 - 6:30pm

Add to Calendar


To build a better mousetrap by Molleindustria, 2014 


 A short history of the gaze by Molleindustria, 2006

Lichenia by Molleindustria, 2019

Lichenia by Molleindustria, 2019

Paolo Pedercini gives a free public lecture as part of the Fall 2022 IDS Lecture Series at The Cooper Union, organized by Leslie Hewitt and Omar Berrada. Video games! Are they hopelessly embedded in an algorithmic culture that privileges ruthless exploitation and toxic power fantasies? Can they be a tool to unpack and dramatize our technocultural dilemmas? Can they provide visions for a post-capitalist future? These questions, and many more, will torment us during this journey through twenty years of making games against the grain. 

Paolo Pedercini Paolo Pedercini is a game developer, artist and educator. At Carnegie Mellon University, he teaches experimental game design, creative coding, and animation. He was born in Italy and migrated to the United States in 2007 to study integrated media arts at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Pedercini’s artistic practice deals with the relationship between electronic entertainment and ideology. Working under the project name “molleindustria” he produces videogames addressing various social issues such as environmental justice (McDonald’s videogame, Oiligarchy, Phone Story), religion (Faith Fighter) and labor and alienation (Every Day the Same Dream, Unmanned, To Build a Better Mousetrap). Molleindustria obtained extensive media coverage and critical acclaim while hopping between digital art, academia, game industry, media activism and Internet folk art. In addition to his studio practice, Paolo advocates for independent and socially conscious gamemaking, within and without artistic contexts.

The IDS public lecture series is part of the Robert Lehman Visiting Artist Program at The Cooper Union. We are grateful for major funding from the Robert Lehman Foundation. The IDS public lecture series is also made possible by generous support from the Open Society Foundations.

Attendees are required to show proof of complete COVID-19 vaccination; a CDC-recommended mask (disposable surgical, KN95, KF94, or N95) is encouraged while indoors.


Located in the Frederick P. Rose Auditorium, at 41 Cooper Square (on Third Avenue between 6th and 7th Streets)

  • Founded by inventor, industrialist and philanthropist Peter Cooper in 1859, The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art offers education in art, architecture and engineering, as well as courses in the humanities and social sciences.

  • “My feelings, my desires, my hopes, embrace humanity throughout the world,” Peter Cooper proclaimed in a speech in 1853. He looked forward to a time when, “knowledge shall cover the earth as waters cover the great deep.”

  • From its beginnings, Cooper Union was a unique institution, dedicated to founder Peter Cooper's proposition that education is the key not only to personal prosperity but to civic virtue and harmony.

  • Peter Cooper wanted his graduates to acquire the technical mastery and entrepreneurial skills, enrich their intellects and spark their creativity, and develop a sense of social justice that would translate into action.