I just read the coolest piece of news I’ve seen in a long time: the Museum of Modern Art is acquiring video games for a new art display, connected to the department of architecture and design. Criteria like aesthetics, time, and the use of space is what determines which games are chosen to be included as artworks.
On MoMA’s Inside/Out blog this morning, senior curator Paola Antonelli wrote:
“Are video games art? They sure are, but they are also design, and a design approach is what we chose for this new foray into this universe. The games are selected as outstanding examples of interaction design… Our criteria, therefore, emphasize not only the visual quality and aesthetic experience of each game, but also the many other aspects–from the elgance of the code to the design of the player’s behavior–that pertain to interaction design… This acquisition allows the Museum to study, preserve, and exhibit video games as part of its Architecture and Design collection.”
You can read the whole thing here. I’m excited to see that Tetris, Portal, EVE: Online, and flOw have already been acquired, out of 14 so far! In all, the museum wants to collect 40 games, with the installation appearing next March. It will feature some demo-like videos of the games or, whenever possible, hands-on gaming right there in the museum.