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Art of Video Games

February 14, 2011 Leave a comment Go to comments

Via Joystiq, the Smithsonian American Art Museum is going to put video games on exhibit as art on March 16, 2012. I’ve been involved in a lengthy and academic debate on the legitimacy of video games as a form of art, so of course I support such an exhibit. I’m not naive enough to believe that this will settle the on-going debate about whether or not video games can be seen as art, but I think that this exhibit will give the debate itself legitimacy.

I gather that the main arguments against video games as art has to do with the highly subjective nature of the video game experience, not to mention the way in which the industry is organized. It’s highly profit driven, but each video game is made by a team of people who work on different aspects, such as art, coding, story, production, sales, advertising, and so on. I don’t think that these arguments are all that valid, primarily because art has many different definitions and forms. I do think that video games represent a new way to look at art.

The Smithsonian American Art Museum has a website to vote on which video games you’d like to see exhibited, which can be found here. The voting covers five eras and four different game genres for each era.

I look forward to seeing where this exhibit will take the debate of whether or not video games are art. I think that, like Science-fiction or comics, people have a prejudice against thinking of video games as a legitimate form of art, though I cannot fathom why. Hopefully this exhibit will change that.

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  1. June 24, 2011 at 12:32 AM

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