Mouchette.net emerged after Neddam had observed unexpected turns in the use of Mouchette.org. Whereas Mouchette.org masquerades as an individual blog, its interactive narrative tools open up a site that extends beyond the me – you relation, to include a third party. Presenting itself as an individual portrait, the site is in reality a masque that users appropriate in order to communicate, and hence to present something about themselves.

Mouchette.net follows up on this idea of an identity-sharing interface that allows users to both communicate via a virtual persona and to share in the construction of its identity. In this manner, Mouchette.net functions as a big laboratory where a tertiary space is opened up and renegotiated collectively.

Left, Stephanie’s contribution, right Lida’s contribution

See here one of the pages created by online members, Stephanie, or Lidaand integrated as parts of Mouchette’s website.

This second platform was launched through an official ceremony in 2003 in New York. While Neddam was the invited artist at the Franklin Furnace residency and Postmasters Gallery, the supposed artist behind Mouchette.org came forth to meet their fans, reveal their identity, and talk about their motives and intentions. The event took place within an inflatable environment especially constructed with New York artist Anakin Koenig at Postmasters Gallery: see “Inside Mouchette” at AKAirways. Most importantly, the ceremony provided an opportunity for Mouchette to give the website away, leading to the creation of Mouchette.net.
After functioning very successfully for several years, today Mouchette.net is described by Neddam as a castle that users can visit but in which they can no longer live, because many of the internet features used to construct the site are no longer operating properly.
Mouchette.net lead to the creation by Neddam of the virtual persona of David Still and XiaoQian.

Text: Anik Fournier

“Marche sur moi” (Walk on me) is an installation designed for the cupola of the Municipal Museum in Arnhem. The installation is a floor of words and wall-mounted text plates, that enter into a dialogue with each other and with the receiver of the message.

Marche sur moi, ecrase-moi, salis-moi, souille-moi, encore, encore, encore….

The texts are anything but neutral, verging on the aggressive. In this sense, the floor and wall acquire almost personal characteristics. As spectator, you cannot avoid them, a feature which is reinforced because the texts are laid into the floor: the spectator enters into an almost physical involvement with the words.

Walk over me, step over me, stamp on me, crush me, dirty me, sully me, again, and again and again.
And the walls say: “Me too, me too …”

Moi aussi, moi aussi…
  • Idea & realisation: Martine Neddam
  • Exhibition: February 29th to April 12th 1992
  • Sponsered and fabricated by: FORBO Krommenie
  • Collection: Arnhem Gemeente Museum
UIT Arnhem April 1992
Capture d’écran: le site web de Mouchette

“Mouchette.org Version 01”a été acquise par le Stedelijk Museum d’Amsterdam, Pays-Bas en décembre 2016.

David Still is an identity donor who offers his personality online to anybody who wants to be him.

A recent immigrant to Almere, Netherlands, 32 years of old, David Still works as an IT consultant for a small but expanding start-up business that specialises in communication systems. In his spare time David works on his own personal website where he offers the use of his identity to other people. David Still is both the artist and the artwork, a cyber-persona created by an artist who built his personality, chose his image and maintains his story. David has rapidly risen in popularity with the site attracting interest worldwide, from USA today to Zip-FM in Japan. Those who write to David play the game, not knowing which David will reply to their queries, as for example in the case of a New York Times reporter who approached him for an interview.

David Still

In May 2002, the F.A.A.Q (Frequently Asked and Answered Questions) was inaugurated. This self-reflective part of the site requires that visitors both ask and answer the questions, highlighting the fact that each visitor is indeed playing the role of David Still, and this has the authority to reply to other visitors’ pressing questions providing tauting responses.
In March 2003, David Still had the opportunity to introduce his real life to his online existence. Hosted by the Cargo Gallery in Almere, in De Realiteit neighbourhood (home to David’s blue house), David Still celebrated his birthday, surrounded by family, friends and secret admirers.
He was nominated for a Webby Award in 2003 and in 2004, he was the recipient of the CYNETart Award in 2004 at the CYNETart Festival in Dresden Germany.

View of the work on top of the building

La Scala was designed for the theatre De Meerse in Hoofddorp. The work was named after the famous theatre in Milan. The origin of this work lies in language.

“La Scala” literally means ladder: the object placed on the roof of the theatre is a ladder of words. But the French word for ladder, l’echelle, also means ‘scale’ – the proportions of a map. This meaning evokes an idea of perspective: things that become smaller, vanishing into infinity. So doing, the ladder has been distorted and the perspective lines disappearing into the vanishing point have been emphasised.

View from a distance
  • Idee & execution: Martine Neddam
  • Commissioned by: Gemeente Haarlemmermeer
  • Constructor: Neon Weka, Holland
  • Completed: 1993
  • Removed : 2013

XiaoQian is the personal website of a young net artist who specializes in the creation of virtual personas and who lives in Kunming, a city in the South-East of China, in the province of Yunnan. The work is a docu-fiction account of what Neddam had experienced while in residency in Kunming.

a screenshot from XiaoQian

This city, which is predominantly inhabited by various ethnic minorities, contrasted greatly from Neddam’s experience of cosmopolitan Shanghai, where she had recently been a guest professor at the University of Fine Arts. Striking to Neddam in Kunming was how this locale persisted in its customary and simple ways, and yet, was simultaneously highly connected. In the Yunnan province traditional dress attire, modes of farming and exchange were seen to co-exist with the fact that almost everyone seemed to have a cell-phone, with easy access to wifi, and with a young generation deeply influenced by, and partaking in, hip-hop culture.

My name is XiaoQian, I create virtual persons

The form embodied by Xiao Qian extends Neddam’s belief that individual identity is a myth and that the internet is predisposed to the investigation of forms of shared identity constructs. On this site, the virtual personas of Mu Yunming, Shaxpir, Wang Shy, He Zhengjun, and Yi Zhe are presented as the creations of Xiao Qian. And yet, the photographs of these figures in their homes, working places, and in respective social contexts take on a documentary nature, giving the visitor the sense that the painter, aspiring hip-hop star, net master, administrator, and calligrapher probably do actually exist.

The formal combination of text and image used for Xiao Qian reflects a preoccupation with hypertextuality. The simple use of various colors of text and the placing of words in bits and pieces spread out within the frame, produce a navigation grammar that offers various directions one can take to gather information, producing non-linear narratives and forms of story telling. The piece thereby highlights standard navigation protocols and habits that still persist despite the possibilities offered by hypertextuality.

View inside a chinese garden

The project XiaoQian is hosted by Turbulence. They also made an archive of it and they have some more info about this project

My Desktop Life is an online software which allows to produce films, or animations with images, sounds, movements, texts, playing in a browser online.
The project is showcased in this website MyDesktoplife.org complete with screen captures of the created films hosted in Vimeo.

MyDesktopLife is an ongoing project. Check out for the news.

view of an image processed through MyDesktopLife

This creation originally supported by a research grant from ZKM Karlsruhe, Art On Your Screen initiated by Matthias Kampmann. It was proposed to the public on the AOYS website in December 2014. They host one of the films created by MydesktopLife, “This Is Home”.

The project is also presented since April 2014 in ” Performing the Media, Online Identities” in the online platform Netspecific.net from the Museum For Samtidskunst in Roskilde, Denmark.

The films created with the software MyDesktopLife represent a flow of consciousness composed of different layers images, texts, sounds, voice melted into each other. It suggests a moment of daydreaming in front of a computer screen when what happens inside your own mind get intertwined with actual views of desktop pictures, memories, typed texts, automatic translations, all this colored by fleeting moods, disturbed by unexpected pop-ups or alert sounds, and then resuming its own flow mingling personal memories and stored data. They can be presented to an audience in different situations, large size flat screens or projected in a dark room.

These films are generated by a custom-made software created in collaboration with James Hudson.

Technical description
The My_Desktop_Life software is broken into two parts: an editor for creating content, and the player to replay it in a browser. The editor is only a thin layer over the player, so with the click of a button, the editor part can disappear completely, leaving the work as it will be seen by the audience. Unlike a ready-made commercial tool which divorces the creative process from the final work, the artist is constantly seeing the work through the eyes of their future audience as they create. The user interface is based on a physical manipulation paradigm: dragging objects and actors around a stage; rather than clicking buttons and typing. The artist should feel as if they are directing a performance, not building a computer file.
Both editor and player software run in the browser, using open standards and frameworks such as CSS,  jQuery, and Javascript. This allows the software to be maintained and developed on the web: the same context in which it will be exhibited. It also allows closer collaboration between the developer and the artist (who live in different cities), with updates and example performances easily uploaded and shared between them.
The technology was chosen to balance cutting-edge features with the need to reach as wide an audience as possible. It has enough power and flexibility to move beyond the standard web content found on commercial sites, and to bend the fabric of the web in ways the audience would not expect, while not requiring the very latest computer or browser software.

screenshot of the index page of mouchette.org

Mouchette.org version 01″ has just been acquired by the Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam.

Press Release
Amsterdam, 14 december 2016 – The Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam and MOTI in Breda are jointly acquiring 17 top digital works by contemporary artists in the Netherlands and abroad who are among the pioneers of digital art. This collaboration is spurred by MOTI’s change of course: it is due to reopen in the course of 2017 as the Stedelijk Museum Breda, where the legacy of the city of Breda will have a more prominent role.
In the short space of time that it existed, and under the management of Mieke Gerritzen, MOTI – founded in 2011 – has managed to build a remarkable collection of digital works by leading artists. The joint acquisition with the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam means investing in a national collection in the field of digital art. This merging of curatorial vision transcends local museum policy. The course taken by MOTI in the collection of digital art coheres perfectly with the policy of the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, which is always geared to new forms of art with a particular interest in the cross-over between graphic design and visual arts. MOTI initiated the collaboration with the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, as a cultural institution with a strong reputation and immense public reach.
In a time where museums are increasingly expected to show artistic distinctiveness and to operate as a cultural enterprise, collaboration at the national level is an obvious step. With this joint acquisition, the two museums seek to enhance the visibility of digital art for the general public, and to give digital art a permanent place in the national art collection, Collectie Nederland. In compiling this joint acquisition, the two curators Ward Janssen (MOTI) and Bart Rutten (Stedelijk Museum) specifically sought to acquire art works that examine the changing role of visual idiom in the internet era, as an art work on the internet or as a critical response to the computerisation of society.

The acquisition consists of works by the leading contemporary Dutch artists Constant Dullaart, Rafaël Rozendaal, Floris Kaayk, Rosa Menkman, Geoffrey Lillemon and Jan Robert Leegte; pioneers of digital art in the past decades JODI, Vuk Ćosić, Martine Neddam (under the pseudonym of Mouchette), and Olia Lialina; and the international artists Jon Rafman, Petra Cortright, Jonas Lund, UV Production House and Michael Mandiberg.

On the side of the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, the acquisition is supported by the Tijl Aankoop Fonds and a private benefactor, with the Bankgiro Lotterij supporting MOTI.

To preserve and present the digital art works, the two museums will jointly develop a policy to manage the digital material in the best possible way for the future. This is a challenge faced by museums around the world. The museums will work with organisations including LIMA, an international platform for media art and specialised in the preservation of digital art works.
MOTI’s digital collection already contains works by artists like Moniker, Rafael Rozendaal, John Maeda, Pinar & Viola, Persijn Broersen & Margit Lukács, Studio Smack, JODI, Olia Lialina & Dragan Espenschied, Rosa Menkman and Robert Jan Leegte. In the past year, MOTI Museum presented the exhibitions Born Digital, Planet Hype, New Delights and Welcome to the Imagesphere, examining developments in media culture and digital art.

Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam was quick to devote attention to digital art, with exhibitions such as Next Level – Art, Games and Reality (2006) and Deep Screen – Art in Digital Culture (2008), and its collection contains digital works by artists such as Brody Condon, Persijn Broersen & Margit Lukács, Jochem van der Spek and Jon Rafman. Recently, the Stedelijk has presented solo exhibitions by artists addressing the digital society such as Ed Atkins, Avery Singer, Jon Rafman and, at present, Jordan Wolfson. In terms of quantity, this is largest joint acquisition by the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, after similar ventures with Centraal Museum Utrecht, Van Abbe Museum in Eindhoven, Museum De Hallen in Haarlem, and Museum Arnhem.

VirtualPerson.net is an online interface created by Martine Neddam, which allows users to create their own virtual person. It is a content management system (CMS) where the user logs in, defines his/her personality and creates content within the parameters designed by the software.

The design of this interface is oriented on the development of narrative content. It uses the superimposition of texts on large size images, and cross/fade effects that allow a feeling of fluidity in the circulation of meanings between the texts and the images. The virtual person manifests its presence in the storytelling by the use of a small image and profile on the left hand corner, but the main interest of the interface is encourage the artist composition of texts over images and all its creative combinations. The use of text in this designed interface resemble a silent voice, attributed to an invisible imaginary person.

From 2 to 14 December 2008 Virtual Person was presented at the Zendai Museum of Modern Art in Shanghai as part of the project Intrude: Art & Life 366. With the collaboration of Annet Dekker

Photos from the workshop at the University of Shanghai: