Connect with us

Art

Five Indie Video Games that Are Also Works of Art

Published

 on

If you purchase an independently reviewed product or service through a link on our website, ARTNews may receive an affiliate commission.

That a video game may have real artistic value is, by now, mostly accepted. However, there are as many styles as there are titles, including games that don’t look like the stereotypical ones with their fully rendered 3D environments and realistic characters. We selected five independent video games that reference art and animation history, something that even those who are not fully plugged into the video-game universe can appreciate.

Gris
For fans of art nouveau, fashion illustration, and Disney’s Sleeping Beauty

Nomada Studio

If anyone could capture the look of early modernism in video-game form, it would be Studio Nomada, whose Gris is definitely a title to check out. Not much happens in terms of plot: A girl meanders through different realms after an unspecified traumatic event has caused her to lose her voice and turned her world into a grayscale wasteland. The farther she proceeds in her journey, the more colors are added to the game’s visuals. Gris’s environments, with their stylized buildings and delicate line work, have echoes of art nouveau and also hint at Miyazaki’s animations and Disney’s Sleeping Beauty. The design is by Conrad Roset, an artist who specializes in fashion illustration and whose signature color palette of reds, blues, and yellows is also found in Gris. Even if your skills as a gamer leave a lot to be desired, you can enjoy Gris; think of it as the visual equivalent of a symphonic poem, in which not much happens in terms of action but in which the senses are delighted. Available on macOS, Microsoft Windows, Nintendo Switch, iOS, PlayStation 4, and Android.

Bound
For fans of abstract art, ballet, and M. C. Escher

IMDB

Poland-based Plastic Studio, which got its start in the demoscene environment in 1997 and now mainly creates virtual-reality and interactive content for museums, has created a 3D platformer that pays tribute to both the visual and the performing arts. I know, I said I would to sidestep games that looked like videogames, avoiding standard 3D environments and pixel art. Yet the 3D environment in which Bound takes place only resembles Super Mario 64 on a surface level. Its abstract shapes, its convoluted line of action, and its psychedelic patterns make it nothing short of Escher-like. Here again we have a girl on a quest to overcome past trauma, but instead of climbing mountains and digging for hidden treasure, Bound’s main character moves in space like a dancer: When she has to jump, she performs a grand-jeté; when she glides along a runway that unfurls like a ribbon, she performs a figure-skating-inspired twirl; to dodge an attack, she may do a cartwheel. Honestly, one could spend hours making this character prance around. Available on PlayStation 4.

Genesis Noir
For fans of film noir, jazz, and trivia.

Feral Cat Den

The movies Alphaville, Metropolis, and The Big Sleep, and Italo Calvino’s short-story collection Cosmicomics, are only a few of the references that can come to mind when playing Genesis Noir, a visual narration by the Brooklyn-based Feral Cat Den that is set at the end or the beginning of the world as we know it. In it, you control a watch salesman living in a seedy metropolis who has an affair with a jazz singer and eventually gets found out. The gunshot that is supposed to end his life is actually what sets the events in motion, and, as you travel through time and space, you encounter a plethora of allusions and tributes to art history: An overview of the main hub town has a diner that looks a lot like that in Edward Hopper’s Nighthawks; the antagonist wears his hair in a pompadour with a curl that looks toward the Fibonacci spiral; a sequence at the bottom of the ocean sees the protagonist adopt the pose of William Blake’s Newton. All of these impressive artistic feats are rendered in a black-and-white palette, with occasional splashes of yellow. It is sometimes said that the more constraints you have, the more creative you can be, and Genesis Noir definitely proves this to be true. Available on: macOS, Microsoft Windows, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One.

Cuphead
For fans of early animation, body horror, and Creepy Kawaii

Studio MDHR

If you find yourself obsessing over early Disney cartoons and Warner Bros. shorts, marveling at the detailed line work, the vaguely uncanny rubber-hose shapes of the characters’ limbs, and the tips of the hat to surrealism, then we suggest you try Cuphead from Studio MDHR. The vintage feel is ubiquitous; even the soundtrack was recorded by a live jazz orchestra. Yet, despite its retro appearance evocative of Saturday morning children’s cartoons, it rests on a dark premise: The characters Cuphead and Mugman have lost a bet with the Devil, who tricked them into gambling away their souls. Playing it requires actual skills, which drew the ire of some crowds, who felt the game was trying to exclude unskilled players. Nevertheless, Cuphead has now garnered mainstream success: More than 4 million units have been sold since its release, and there’s a Netflix animated series too. Available on Microsoft Windows, Xbox One, macOS, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4.

Sable
For fans of 1970s-’80s sci-fi and Studio Ghibli

Shedworks

A girl on a desertlike planet is looking for artifacts. No, it’s not Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind, nor Star Wars The Force Awakens, nor is it the world of the first adaptation of Dune. This is Sable, a game from Shedworks in which the eponymous heroine embarks on a coming-of-age task: She has to find a mask that will reflect her job and purpose before she can return to her nomadic clan. It’s an open-world exploration, where dinosaur bones alternate with palm groves and ruins of great civilizations past, and where the color palette changes according to location and time of day. The style is reminiscent of both Moebius and early Miyazaki (for one thing, the glider the heroine uses bears some resemblance to the one seen in Nausicaä) while the open world and the focus on exploration and puzzle solving is a tribute to Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild.The soundtrack is by indie-pop band Japanese Breakfast, and the game has an overall indie-pop feel, something rarely found in a video game. Film and TV adaptations are on the way. Available on: Microsoft Windows, Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One, PlayStation 5.

 

728x90x4

Source link

Continue Reading

Art

ACCC discontinues investigation into 'white hands on black art' allegations – ABC News

Published

 on


[unable to retrieve full-text content]

ACCC discontinues investigation into ‘white hands on black art’ allegations  ABC News

728x90x4

Source link

Continue Reading

Art

Home + Away artwork opens in Vancouver’s Hastings Park

Published

 on

A new art installation now towers over Vancouver’s Hastings Park fields in celebration of the city’s history of spectators and sports.

Home + Away is a sculpture by Seattle artists Annie Han and Daniel Mihalyo of Lead Pencil Studio, which opened Monday in the southeast end of the historic park.

It’s a 17-metre-tall structure that resembles a narrow set of bleachers — similar to the stands of the Empire Stadium, which stood on the site of the park from 1954 to 1993 and hosted The Beatles, among many others. It recalls a covered ski jump that stood there in the 1950s and the nearby wooden rollercoaster at the PNE.

The city says the public is invited to walk the stairs and sit on the benches.

“In addition to being visually striking, this artwork is intended to be ascended, sat on and experienced. It offers exciting experiences of height and views and provides 16 rows of seating for up to 49 people, making for a unique spectator experience when watching events at Empire Fields,” the city said in a release Monday.

The idea for the park to include public art was outlined in the Hastings Park “Master Plan,” first adopted by the city in 2010. The city says Han and Mihalyo first presented their design in 2015.

“It’s wonderful to see this piece realized within the context of such a well-used public space,” said Han.

Home + Away was inspired directly by the site history of spectatorship, and we hope it will connect Hastings Park users to that history and the majestic views of the environment for many decades to come,” added Mihalyo.

The artwork features a large light-up sign, in the style of a sports scoreboard, that reads “HOME” and “AWAY.”

 

728x90x4

Source link

Continue Reading

Art

Bill Viola, Video Artist Who Established the Medium as an Integral Part of Contemporary Art, Dies at 73

Published

 on

Bill Viola, whose decades-long engagement with video proved vital in establishing the medium as an integral part of contemporary art, died on July 12 at his home in Long Beach, California. He was at 73 years old. The cause was complications related to Alzheimer’s disease. The news of his passing was confirmed by James Cohan Gallery.

Viola’s works are centered around the idea of human consciousness and such fundamental experiences as birth, death, and spirituality. He delved into mystical traditions from Zen Buddhism to Islamic Sufism, as well as Western devotional art from the Middle Ages and the Renaissance in his videos, which often juxtaposed themes of life and death, light and dark, noise and silence. These explorations were achieved by submerging viewers in both image and sound with cutting-edge technologies for their time.

“I first used the camera and lens as a surrogate eye, to bring things closer, or to magnify them, to experiment with perception, to extend vision and make lengthy observations of simple objects,” Viola said in a 2015 interview. “Once you do that, their essence becomes visible. So I suppose I was always interested in the inner life of the world around me.”

Beginning in the 1970s, Viola created videotapes, architectural video installations, sound environments, electronic music performances, flat panel video pieces, and works for television broadcast—all of which expanded the scope of the medium and established Viola as one of its most notable practitioner.

Video still of a man diving into water that has been reversed. The image is mostly black and teal.

In 2003 the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York; Tate, London; and the Centre Pompidou in Paris jointly acquired Bill Viola’s 2001 three-channel video installation Five Angels for the Millennium.

Photo Kira Perov/©Bill Viola Studio

Bill Viola was born in 1951. He grew up in Queens and Westbury, New York, and attended P.S. 20 in Flushing, before receiving his BFA in experimental studios from Syracuse University in 1973. There, he studied with visual art with the likes of Jack Nelson and electronic music with Franklin Morris.

Following his graduation, between 1973 to 1980, Viola studied and performed with composer David Tudor in the music group Rainforest, which later became known as Composers Inside Electronics. He also worked as technical director at the pioneering video studio Art/tapes/22 in Florence, Italy from 1974 to 1976. During that time he encountered the work of other seminal video artists like Nam June Paik, Bruce Nauman, and Vito Acconci.

Viola was subsequently an artist-in-residence at New York’s WNET Thirteen Television Laboratory between 1976 to 1983, wherein he created a series of works that premiered on television. He traveled to the Solomon Islands, Java, and Indonesia to record traditional performing arts between 1976 and 1977. Later that year, Viola was invited to show work at La Trobe University in Melbourne, Australia, by cultural arts director Kira Perov, with whom he married and began a lifelong collaboration.

He was appointed an instructor in advanced video at the California Institute of the Arts in Valencia, California in 1983. He was the Getty Research Institute scholar-in-residence in Los Angeles in 1998 and was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2000.

In 1985, Viola received with a Guggenheim Fellowship for fine arts, and later that decade, in 1989, he was awarded the MacArthur “Genius” Fellowship. His work was also featured in some of the world’s most notable exhibitions, including Documenta VI in 1977, Documenta XI in 1992, the 1987 and 1993 editions of the Whitney Biennial, and the 2001 Venice Biennale.

In 1995, he represented the United States at the 46th edition of the Venice Biennale. For the pavilion, Viola produced the series of works “Buried Secrets,” including one of his most known works The Greeting, which offers a contemporary interpretation of Pontormo’s oil painting The Visitation (ca.1528–30). The Deutsche Guggenheim Berlin and New York’s Guggenheim Museum commissioned the digital fresco cycle in high-definition video, titled Going Forth By Day, in 2002.

Viola’s work was the subject of a major 25-year survey at the Whitney Museum of American Art in 1997, which subsequently toured internationally. His work has been the subject of major museum retrospectives in the years since, including at the Grand Palais in Paris (in 2014), the Palazzo Strozzi in Florence (2017), the Guggenheim Bilbao in Spain (2017), and the Barnes Foundation in Philadelphia (2019), as well as an exhibition pairing his work with that of Michelangelo at the Royal Academy of Art in London in 2019.

Viola is survived by his wife Kira Perov, who has been the executive director of his studio since 1978, and their two children.

“One thing that’s very exciting about video that has turned me on since I first saw this glowing image way back in 1970 is that it can be so much,” Viola said in a 1995 with Charlie Rose on the occasion of this US Pavilion at the Biennale. “Furthermore, what’s really exciting is I don’t think it’s been since really the Renaissance where artists have been able to use a medium that one could say is the dominant communication form in society.”

728x90x4

Source link

Continue Reading

Trending