Updated: Aug 14, 2022
When I let my mind wander to brighter times of innocence, back when I was just a child, a conversation I had with my father always comes back to me.
We were sitting upstairs in the house he was finishing building for us. We had left behind us the small house of wood and stone. Left behind the lovely property and the old walls to move deeper into the countryside.
Sitting on the concrete floor and playing with a tiny Hot Wheels car toy that I was flying around in the sky of an imaginary parking lot, I asked him: "Dad? When will we have flying cars?".
He told me he didn't know.
So I asked more specifically: "Do you think that by the year 2000 we will have flying cars?”.
He said "yes" with so much confidence that, to this day, I still wonder if he didn't believe it himself. Maybe I just refuse to think he would have lied to his son on such a serious topic.
By the end of the 90s my father was picking up my brother and I from school in an old rusty blue carcass, barely drivable. Some parts of the car were maintained together with tape. Enough to shatter my hopes to see anything taking off from the ground anytime soon.
I was a Sci-Fi fan. In 2000, the exciting BladeRunner-style future wasn't too distant anymore, and I could see my flying car dreams getting away from me once again.
2010, I moved to America. In a small town with barely enough funding to protect itself from another flood, where too many people die from drug use, where cars can (once again) barely drive, and where my best friends live in houses made of wood, deep in the forest.
From there, I wrote more Science Fiction and painted more flying cars. That's what I do. I draw and paint things. I imagine worlds and try to make them live through my images and words.
By 2020, we could hear the silences of the upcoming Collapse. BladeRunner was already behind us, and the gas price was only increasing. The planet could barely deal with us anymore and was displaying clear signs of exhaustion and disgust.
In 2031, the Blackout disconnected us from our computers and modern habits. We still do not know what happened. It doesn't matter. The Blackout was the one-and-only bullet needed. Our world was now to collapse.
I knew by then that Science Fiction would not come. That it was all a lie. Stories to imagine some kind of exciting future for ourselves. A way for us to deny the simple fact: we fucked it up. We were the last ones.
By 2033, what was left of the government decided to relocate part of the American population into an experimental city. A place kept hidden from the maps for decades. The city was a controversial project developed during the 50s by Hover, an independent corporation, as an attempt to isolate a strange virus corrupting the flesh and the structure of the human body.
Because of its isolation and secret autonomy, the hidden city survived the Collapse and became a massive Ultrapolis, gathering humanity's best and worst within its heart.
I entered Retrocity in 2037.
2050. I like to caress the black walls when I wander the streets at night. I listen to the sirens of police cars in the distance. I watch the rain falling through the neon lights.
The siren gets closer.
The police interceptor flies over my head.