MoMA kicked off Contemporary Art Forum: Critical Play—The Game as an Art Form last night with an overview of critical and artist led play. Here are some quotes from the first session:
Mary Flanagan: “Is thinking about games as an art form tied to the historic exchanges specific to art history, or is it a cry for legitimacy? If a Conceptual artist is playing Pac-Man in a forest and Pac-Man dies, does the Conceptual artist hear the “wa wa wa wah” sound of his death?”
Susan Laxton on Surrealists parlor games (such as the Exquisite Corpse): “Any illusions about the game as a site of cooperation and collaboration were dispelled in the struggle over the power of hierarchy among the players.”
Hannah Higgins: “Games have always been a way to blur the boundaries of access to specific experiences on behalf of some group (cowboys and Indians, war, chess, play cooking).”
Frank Lantz: “When you invite games into the museum, you dig a tunnel to the sports area.”
If you can’t make it to today’s forum you’ll be able to view it streaming here.