Total Entartete

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Ivor Diosi Total Entartete PromoPic.jpg


Ivor Diosi (credited as Archila Vimmi in 2005 version)


Total Entartete (Wolfenstein 3D Mod)


Total Entartete Mod is an artistic modification of the iconic game Wolfenstein 3D that replaces the visuals offensive to contemporary German censorship with visuals that were offensive to the Nazi regime. It juxtaposes and confronts issues like state censorship, freedom of speech and historical revisionism. Below its playful interface it takes a deep jab at the arbitrariness of transposition of signifiers in and out of contexts, over historical epochs, over medium overhauls and cultural paradigm shifts. It specifically addresses the ongoing public debate over visceral virtual gore in games versus intellectual and cultural violence and questions their respective impacts on realities in actual historical context.

Entartete Kunst (Degenerate Art) was the title of an exhibition, mounted by the Nazis in Munich in 1937. It was a term adopted by the Nazi regime in Germany to describe and ban virtually all avantgarde modern art, on the grounds that it was un-German, degenerate, a threat to German culture and national mental health. Thousands of works were burned by the Berlin Fire Brigade. Artists identified as degenerate were branded as enemies of the state and subjected to sanctions. Many went into exile, some died in concentration camps or committed suicide.

The German BPjM Bundesprüfstelle für Jugendgefährdende Medien (Federal Department for Media Harmful to Young Persons) is a contemporary upper-level German federal agency. It is responsible for examining media works (including computer games) allegedly harmful to young people and entering these onto an official index. It is illegal to sell or make any indexed games available to minors in Germany and it is illegal to advertise for them in any form, including putting them on store shelves or publishing reviews in gaming magazines. The games technically disappear from the public. The only way to actually acquire these games is via request - “unter der Ladentheke” (under the desk). Under a special subsection, works can also be confiscated when certain articles of the Strafgesetzbuch (Criminal Law) apply to them. Confiscation, unlike indexing, results in a nationwide ban - the consequences go beyond being listed on the BPjM's Index: it is illegal to sell the item to anybody, to own it with the intent of selling, to publicly present it and more. A well-known example of a confiscated work from the gaming culture is Wolfenstein 3D - a groundbreaking first-person shooter, the primary mission of which is, rather ironically, killing Nazi troopers and SS officers.

As the implicit concern of the Bundesprüfstelle is that some content in games can be harmful to morals, and even mental health of the "Jugend" and of the German culture at large (in one word: degenerate), the artist has taken the files of the game and replaced the offensive swastikas with images of those degenerate works that were once physically burned by the actual carriers of the swastikas.


1993, recreated 2005


software (computer game modification)

Private Collections, public domain

Exhibition history

  • 90's underground gaming oriented bulletin-board systems (BBS), since 1994.
  • “Final Countdown” (Archila Vimmi), Školská Gallery, Prague, Czech Republic, 2006.