All works © mak2 2024

 “Home Sweet Home” (2019-) are triptychs on canvas that make use of the popular American life simulation videogame “The Sims” and are each painted by three separate painters on the Chinese e-commerce platform Taobao.

Lacking in specific objectives, “The Sims” is one of the best selling video games of all time, with over 200 million copies sold worldwide. It allows players to live a simulated life through a customised avatar and design their home however they please. For many it is a form of escapism used to craft an alternate reality.

Through “The Sims” Mak 2 constructs dream-like home environments that speak to life in Hong Kong. Within the game there are multiple different cities from which you can select and Mak 2 only chooses the city of “San Myshuno” which shares an uncanny resemblance to Hong Kong. She uses bizarre and nonsensical elements, which the game renders perfect and immaculate nonetheless, to explore both idyllic and traumatic aspects of life. She takes screen-captures of these environments and then divides the resultant image into thirds. She has each third painted by a different painter on Taobao who is given the least amount of instruction possible. Owing to interpretive inconsistencies, different skill levels, and varied materials, the final appearance of each triptych is unpredictable. Through fracturing the process of production and allowing external factors to intervene in the actualisation of her understanding of home, Mak 2’s “Home Sweet Home” series not only elucidates the inevitable disparity between fantasy and reality, its also crafts a comment on authorship, “copy-cat” culture, and narratives of home.