press release

The exhibition "games. Computer games by artists" seeks to display the varied range of artistic approaches to the phenomenon of computer games with approximately 30 exemplary works of art. Thus, it addresses a subject, which has intensely occupied the young media art scene over the past few years.

In the works shown commercial computer games such as, "Pong", "Jet Set Willy", "Super Mario", "Tetris", "Quake" or "Counter Strike" – have been modified in various ways. Their visual aesthetics as well as their functions have been tampered with. In addition to games that can be played on computers and consoles the exhibition also encompasses installations, videos, objects and graphics.

The range of artistic strategies displayed in the exhibition spans from the adaptation of the programming code to the manipulation of the hardware through to the “translation” of digital scenes and motifs into the language of analogue visual media and objects.

All works shown in the exhibition display a constructive rather than simply reactive approach towards the hardware and software of the rapidly expanding computer games industry. The artists utilise the given standards, whilst at the same time deconstructing them with subversive gestures and infusing them with new meanings.

games. Computer games of artists seeks to display the varied range of artistic approaches to the phenomenon of computer games with approximately 30 exemplary works of art. The works deal with different aspects of computer games: for example their binary logic of winning/loosing or on the assumed predictability of the game’s outcome. Also, the flexibility of role and identity allocation is examined within game scenarios. Other works concentrate on the creation of an alternative reality in the 3Dspace of computer-generated game scenes (and thus on the interaction between simulation and reality) or question the apparent unequivocalness of hard and software, the console and computer and even the infallible black box.

A catalogue will accompany the exhibition. It will be presented towards the end of the exhibition (November 29).

Computer games by artists

Projekt: hartware medien kunst verein + medien_kunst_netz dortmund
Kooperation: dortmund-project + LEGNRW
Konzept: Tilman Baumgärtel
Kuratoren: Tilman Baumgärtel, Hans D. Christ, Iris Dressler
Ort: ehem. Reserveteillager Phoenix West, Dortmund-Hörde

Künstler: Lucien Alma / Laurent Hart, Cory Arcangel, Norbert Bayer, Tom Betts, Pash Buzari, Leon Cmielewski / Josephine Starrs, Arcangel Constantini, Vuk Cosic, Slovenia Aurelien Froment, Fuchs-Eckermann, Beate Geissler / Oliver Sann, Margarete Jahrmann / Max Moswitzer, JODI , Joan Leandre, Mongrel , Tilman Reiff / Volker Morawe, Anne-Marie Schleiner / Brody Condon, Jan-Peter E.R. Sonntag, Space Invader , Jon Thomson & Alison Craighead, Olaf Val, Yang Zhenzhong, Lars Zumbansen ...