Social Change

Motel X Wins Gold!

Hey all! Christine Marque here. I am the creative director and story editor for Barking Squirrel Media. I am also the creator and founder of an art installation titled Motel X .

Motel X is a multi-media art installation bringing awareness and prevention to Human Trafficking within the greater Cincinnati area. Motel X premiered on January 11th, 2020 through April 4, 2020, at the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center. The goal was to create an exhibit that invokes an empathetic link to understanding human trafficking, allow people to fight against this atrocity, as well as give the survivors a platform to share their art, story, and/or knowledge.

Motel X is a culmination between a social justice cause, an experiential art environment, and what’s in my head. Ever since I was in high school, I tried to find a way to use my talents in a way that could help prevent human trafficking. As an artist, I love it when I can touch and interact with art. I remember those experiences much more clearly than looking at art hung on a wall. I came up with Motel X about 4 years ago, and it has developed incredibly since then. The visual inspiration is a 70’s motel meets Alice In Wonderland. Everything can be touched, explored, and interactive. As you interact, you’ll come into contact with information about human trafficking that happens here in the Greater Cincinnati area.

As part of the multi-media approach,  I envisioned two experimental films. In partnership with PONES, I created A Sex Trafficking Story and A Labor Trafficking Story . Each film features a provocative abstract dance that shows the audience the complicated and visceral nature of human trafficking. Members of the Barking Squirrel Media team created a set and used the props from the actual exhibit in the videos. These films are a beautiful, unsettling juxtaposition. We decided to submit A Sex Trafficking Story to several festivals and awards.

And we won!!!

Barking Squirrel Media submitted the film to MUSE Creative awards and took home gold in the experimental category. Other award winners in different categories included Ferrari, BMW, Goodyear, Pokemon Go, Sony Pictures, and many more. It is awe-inspiring to be on the same platform as these gigantic companies. It goes to show you what a lot of passion, incredibly talented collaborators, and a dream can do.