I'm Georgina Goodlander. I'm the exhibition coordinator of the Art of Video Games at the
Smithsonian American Art Museum. The Art of Video Games explores the evolution
of video games as an artistic medium over the last 40 years. We show 80 video games,
over 20 systems and 5 eras. We believe that for video games being and
artwork, it has three voices: It's the artist or designer that created
it, that had a message that it wanted to portray. The mechanics of the game itself is the
second voice. So the game structure, the rules, how you play it.
And then the third one which is the most interesting one, I think, is the player. The
fact that the video game can't be an artwork unless somebody is playing it and that everybody
has a slightly different experience. So we picked five different games, one from
each era of video games and games that we really felt were pivotal in their era. They
influenced all games that came after them and those are:
PacMan, The original Super Mario Brothers, Secret of Monkey Island, which is a personal
favorite, Myst and Flower.
Being an exhibition coordinator means doing a lot
of different things. I was involved in almost every aspect of the exhibition, so I worked
very closely with the curator (Chris Melissinos) as he was coming up with the games for the
exhibition; I had to talk to all the game companies to make sure that they were ok with
us using their games in the exhibition. One of my favorites was the opportunity to
interview video game designers. We interviewed a whole range of people, from the people that
designed the games, develop the games, people that do the writing, the musicians, the artists.
I had to research all the games that were in the exhibition; I hadn't played them
all before. So actually during the day, as part of my work, I got to play video games.
I mean what could be better than that? The Art of the Video Games is travelling to
ten other cities around the U.S. through 2016.
I think if you're interested in working
with art and working in museums, it's just kind of getting out there and experiencing
as many of them as you possibly can. I've always been fascinated with museums. Whenever
I go to a new place, new country, new city, I always check out at least one museum.
To find out more about this exhibit, visit the The Art of Video Games site at americanart.si.edu.
You can also find out if it's coming to a city near you.
And you can find more games and art at Kids.gov.