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September 19, 2014, 11:50:25 AM
TIGSource ForumsPlayerGamesFlywrench at the New Museum
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Ivan
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alright, let's see what we can see

Valaam0
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« on: March 09, 2009, 12:44:24 PM »

I really like Flywrench and I like Mark Essen, but somehow I find this a little ridiculous:

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/09/arts/design/09trie.html?_r=1

Quote
The images in Flywrench are reminiscent of the grid-based canvases that brought the painter Peter Halley to attention in the 1980s.

Come on? Really?
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fish
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« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2009, 12:46:58 PM »

fuck the art world.
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TheBlackMask
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« Reply #2 on: March 09, 2009, 12:53:09 PM »

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fuck the art world.

More like fuck the mainstream media.  From Jason Rohrer's Esquire article to this...whenever a major media outlet picks up indie games in any form, they ruin them.
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Corpus
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« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2009, 12:54:21 PM »

Before you read this, know that it is highly tangential:

It always irritates me that the only people where I live who share a good number of my tastes and interests are often involved in one soul-destroyingly pretentious art scene or another, and the more places I visit, the more I realise that it seems to be that way almost anywhere you go.

Why can't there just be an art scene, somewhere, where people are normal about things? I know that there are plenty of people capable of it, but they seem to be so difficult to find in amongst the wankers that they never manage to band together anywhere other than on the internet.
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Kneecaps
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« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2009, 01:06:35 PM »

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As Mr. Essen began scrolling through the game, each move seemed more treacherous than the next, a blend of art and brain teaser.

This sentence made me physically cringe.  Will I have to put up with this type of stuff in art school? WTF
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fish
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« Reply #5 on: March 09, 2009, 01:50:27 PM »

it is such incredible bullshit.


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fish
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« Reply #6 on: March 09, 2009, 01:57:24 PM »

just to be clear here, ive always been a supporter of the art/game movement.
but this is just ridiculous. it's trying so hard.

here's my try:

"Essen's use of colors and shapes combined with movement remind's one of the birth of cinema, perhaps even kabuki theater, if only it was interactive."

im all for the new arcade.
but displaying a game in a gallery dosent make it make it incredible art. couldnt it be displayed for its design qualities? for the sake of making new types of games for people to play together in public places? that's what's cool about what essen does. using colors and shapes in his game dosent make him the new mondrian.

for fuck's sake.



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TheBlackMask
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« Reply #7 on: March 09, 2009, 02:07:21 PM »

To the majority of people "art games" and probably video games in general will never be more than just pretty things to look at.  It's no surprise that some douchebag that writes for the New York Times can't look past this.
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Ivan
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alright, let's see what we can see

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« Reply #8 on: March 09, 2009, 02:26:06 PM »

I think the problem that I have with these kind of things is that, in spite of the vague and uninformed accolades lavished upon what seems to be an arbitrarily chosen (no offense to Mark Essen's hustling skills) specimen of "video games", there is always a tinge of condescension present towards the medium itself. That, as Phil pointed out, the game's virtues are purely aesthetical and it might as well have been someone's motion graphics project.
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fish
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« Reply #9 on: March 09, 2009, 02:59:07 PM »

im tired of the idea that "art" is something above videogames, that we're trying to reach, to graduate to.

it's 2 parallel things that sometimes overlap.
videogame is more design than art anyway.
and that's more interesting.
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Corpus
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« Reply #10 on: March 09, 2009, 03:19:22 PM »

Well, I do think that it's something that's being reached towards in the sense that people seem to be becoming better at achieving the overlap you're talking about.

I wish that people would stop talking about "art games," though. I think it's a really harmful label, because it sets them apart from all other games and, to me, suggests both that these "art games" are somehow niche products/creations and that every other game is somehow incapable of being art, or possessing some quality of art.

I don't think that design and art should necessarily be separate, by the way. All art is designed to some extent. It doesn't just happen.

But yeah, I think the problem with the article is not its attempting to equate art with games, and I am a fan of Messhof's stuff. It's just that it's a load of seeming, posturing, ridiculous bullshit.
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ஒழுக்கின்மை
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« Reply #11 on: March 09, 2009, 03:26:04 PM »

I'm not really seeing the same kinds of problems you guys are seeing with this article. For me the biggest problem is that the context is modern art -- i.e. the game is being looked at from the perspective of modern artists (in general I consider the modern art scene to be a cross between a scam and a cult). Have any of you actually been to the new museum of contemporary art? It's pretty terrible:



I'd be ashamed to have my games put there and kind of am surprised Messhof doesn't mind having his game be in that place. It's largely populated by stuff like a guy who sewed his own mouth shut and called it art.
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Soulliard
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« Reply #12 on: March 09, 2009, 05:30:46 PM »

It's obvious that the writer really doesn't have a clue about what she's talking about. Flywrench is an excellent game because of its elegant design, not the pretty shapes and colors. I wouldn't be surprised if she'd never even played it. Lips Sealed
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Andy Wolff
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« Reply #13 on: March 09, 2009, 06:02:24 PM »

art v design: i don't believe that for a game to be fun it needs to be artsy, but it does need good design. but putting meaning into a game might make it more artsy, and that's never a bad thing until people start over  analyzing it to such ridiculous extents as those picked out above
i don't want to see a flux of games with shit design but lots of meaning, because then they're not games anymore. then they're piles of junk to all those who don't get them, and frustratingly stupid moving pictures to those who do

flywrench is cool but calling it modern art is insulting it a little. games are better than art because they are simply more


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Craig Stern
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« Reply #14 on: March 09, 2009, 06:04:53 PM »

Just to verify, I Google image-searched Peter Halley, then looked at some screenshots of Flywrench. Yeah--his paintings and Flywrench look absolutely nothing alike. Whoever wrote this article is full of crap.

I also agree that it minimizes the importance of video games to think of them as visual art. The visuals are only a part of the equation, and not even close to being the most important part.
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cactus
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« Reply #15 on: March 18, 2009, 04:16:25 AM »

Sure, the article sounds a bit ridiculous, but it's meant to be read by snobby art folks (or wannabe snobby art folks), not game developers or gamers.

I think it's awesome that Mark's games are being recognized as art. I hope I can have a similar article written about me some day.

Games should be taken more seriously, and even if it means some people take it to the extreme, that's not a problem with me. I'm surprised you guys aren't congratulating him instead of bitching about the article itself.
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Soulliard
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« Reply #16 on: March 18, 2009, 07:28:35 AM »

Yeah, I'm glad that his game is in an art museum. I'm just afraid that most of its viewers are going to miss the point.
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PaleFox
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« Reply #17 on: March 18, 2009, 07:42:14 AM »

The thing is, I don't see a connection really between Flywrench and modern art. I mean, I actually like that style of art, I often go to modern art museums, but generally the idea is to be incredibly abstract, like a minimalist painting; Messhof's game, while abstract, is all defined. I suppose you could put it in a museum of design? I know there are a few in some of the larger cities.

Perhaps we need a Museum of Contemporary Gaming run by the pretentious art world; they would often misinterpret things but at least good stuff would probably get in.

Of course, so would Passage, but that is a small price to pay.
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Shade Jackrabbit
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« Reply #18 on: March 18, 2009, 02:42:12 PM »

Games should be taken more seriously, and even if it means some people take it to the extreme, that's not a problem with me. I'm surprised you guys aren't congratulating him instead of bitching about the article itself.
I think the problem more is that nobody except people in the modern art scene takes modern art seriously, so the effect of this is basically null, if not harmful. People could now have two negative perceptions to make about the game:

1. It's a game so isn't worth the time.
2. It's modern art so it's laughable bullshit.

Really, games don't need MORE negative stereotypes right now.

Now as for my own opinion, I don't really like it, and I think it's bullshit. The people calling it art have way too narrow a definition of art to have any credence in their claims of things being or not being art. Now if they picked up the adventure game Outcry and called it art I'd have to agree with them because it feels very much like a mix of art form, including modern art. I've never played Flywrench so I can't say if it's art or not but I really don't like the idea of "modern artists" claiming things about it when they honestly don't know what the hell they're talking about.

[/pretentious rant]
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