When life is the game, how does one learn to play?
Collected in one place are the most poetic, artistic and artful games that embody the qualities of human existence. These games reflect our nature and our essence back to us, teaching us who and what we are, or can be. Each author has their own perspective, something different to convey, and a unique mode of expression.
Brenda Brathwaite’s award winning game Train confronts the viewer as a physical object and as an historical reference. Its power is in its simple construction as a work of sculpture and in the function of its play. Jason Rohrer’s Passage is perhaps one of the most lyric short games ever made, with play taking all of five minutes. The retro blocky 8-bit graphics abstract us from the experience but also let us see ourselves and our lives in the play of the game.
The other games fall somewhere in between, spanning the gamut from quick play, to epic games requiring many hours to complete.The exhibition focuses on the experience of playing and learning to play. Because of the gulf between “traditional” game design and art, there is a need to reach into the various communities and let people self-nominate. For this reason an open call was issued and works were curated into the exhibition with the help of the community. People of all backgrounds are taking up game making tools to tell their stories and share their experiences and their knowledge.
Learn to Play is also a challenge. During the course of the exhibition, workshops will be held to teach basic game design tools. At the end of the workshops we will have game challenges from which work may be curated into the exhibition.