I wanted to point your attention towards an exhibit that I am going to be creating, and curating, at the Smithsonian American Art Museum in March of 2012. From the Smithsonian website:http://www.americanart.si.edu/exhibitions/archive/2012/games/
The Art of Video Games
March 16, 2012 – September 9, 2012
Video games have grown to become a significant part of our culture since the introduction of the first home video games in the early 1970s. More than seventy percent of American households play video games on a regular basis, and many families now have two generations of computer users, and gamers, at home.
Video games use images, actions, and player participation to tell stories and engage their audiences. In the same way as film, animation, and performance, they can be considered a compelling and influential form of narrative art.
Many museums have explored art inspired by video games, but this exhibition will be the first to examine comprehensively the evolution of video games themselves as an artistic medium. From the Atari VCS to the Playstation 3, The Art of Video Games will show the development of visual effects and aesthetics during four decades, the emergence of games as a means for storytelling, the influence of world events and popular culture on game development, and the impact that the games can have on society. It will include multimedia presentations of game footage, video interviews with developers and artists, large prints of in-game screen shots, historic game consoles, and a selection of working game systems for visitors to play. In addition, the public will be asked to assist with the selection of materials for the show by choosing the games that they feel best represent particular moments in the overall timeline.
Chris Melissinos, video game industry expert and founder of PastPixels, is the guest curator of the exhibition.
I started gaming back in the early 1970's and have never stopped. As someone who collects (47+ systems at home), works in the video games industry, and raising my own kids as gamers, it was important to me to see that this exhibit was created. I should also mention the amazing staff at the SI who green lit the project and will be working on this exhibit with me.
There will be more info as we get into the meat of this project, as we are just getting started. You can visit PastPixels.com or my Facebook page (PastPixels), starting in January/February 2010 to keep up with the work. Not TOO many details, mind you, as we want SOME of this to be a surprise
It is humbling to realize that we are going to finally have the opportunity to bring into focus the amazing works of the video game industry through the prestigious lens of the Smithsonian American Art Museum. More to come!