The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess
Shigeru Miyamoto - Executive Producer
Eiji Aonuma - Director
Satoru Takizawa - Art Director
Eiji Aonuma, Satoru Iwata - Producers
Nintendo Wii, 2006, Nintendo of America, Inc.
Ken Levine - Creative Director & Executive Producer
Paul Hellquist - Lead Designer
Dean Tate - Senior Designer & Artist
Scott Sinclair - Art Director
Microsoft Xbox 360, 2007, image courtesy of 2K Games, Inc., and Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc.
Mass Effect 2
Casey Hudson - Director
Mac Walters, Drew Karpyshyn - Writers
Casey Hudson - Producer
Microsoft Xbox 360, 2010, © 2010 Electronic Arts, Inc. All trademarks are the property of their respective owners.
Sonic Adventure
Yuki Naka, Keith Palmer - Producers
Takasi Iizuka - Director
Kazuyuki Hoshino - Art Director
SEGA Dreamcast, 1999, © SEGA. All Rights Reserved.
Super Mario Brothers 3
Shigeru Miyamoto, Takashi Tezuka, Hiroshi Yamauchi - Directors
Satoru Iwata - Executive Producer
Konji Kondo - Composer
Nintendo Entertainment System, 1990, Nintendo of America, Inc.

The Art of Video Games

October 26, 2013 — January 19, 2014

Part of a ten-city national tour, The Art of Video Games is one of the first major exhibitions to explore the 40-year evolution of video games as an artistic medium, with a focus on striking graphics, creative storytelling and player interactivity. The exhibition features some of the most influential artists and designers across five eras of game development, from early pioneers to contemporary designers.

Video games use player participation to tell stories and engage audiences. In the same way as film, animation and performance, video games are a compelling and influential form of narrative art.

The Art of Video Games focuses on the interplay of graphics, technology and storytelling through some of the best games for 20 gaming systems ranging from the Atari VCS to the PlayStation 3.

The exhibition features 80 video games that demonstrate the evolution of the medium. The games are presented through still images and video footage. In addition, the galleries include video interviews with developers and artists, historic game consoles and large prints of in-game screen shots.

New technologies allow designers to create increasingly interactive and sophisticated game environments while staying grounded in traditional game types. Five featured games, one from each era, are available in the exhibition galleries for visitors to play for a few minutes, to gain some feel for the interactivity. The playable games–Pac-Man, Super Mario Brothers, The Secret of Monkey Island, Myst and Flower–show how players interact with the virtual worlds, highlighting innovative new techniques that set the standard for many subsequent games.

The Art of Video Games is organized by the Smithsonian American Art Museum with generous support from the Entertainment Software Association Foundation; Sheila Duignan and Mike Wilkins; Shelby and Frederick Gans; Mark Lamia; Ray Muzyka and Greg Zeschuk; Rose Family Foundation; Betty and Lloyd Schermer; and Neil Young. The C.F. Foundation in Atlanta supports the museum’s traveling exhibition program, “Treasures to Go.”

Everson presentation is made possible by funding from the County of Onondaga administered by CNY Arts, Carrier, Cannon Pools & Spas, and The Gifford Foundation.

Media support is provided by CNY Central, Syracuse New Times, WCNY and WRVO.

Members’ Opening Night Reception
An opening night reception will be held Friday, October 25, 2013. Pre-registration is required. More Information »


The Art of Video Games: A Curator’s Quest
Lecture and book signing by The Art of Video Games curator Chris Melissinos.
October 26 / 1.00pm / Free

The Art of Video Games curator Chris Melissinos will introduce the science fiction film, TRON.
October 26 / 7.00pm / Free

Wreck-It Ralph & Video Game Character Competition
Join The Art of Video Games Curator Chris Melissinos on a Wreck-It Ralph adventure!
October 27 / 1.00pm / Free

8 Bit Weapon & ComputeHer Concert
$15 advance sale or $20 at the door / Tickets include admission to The Art of Video Games
November 1 / 7.00pm

Paint by Numbers BYOC(olor): Video Game Characters
Bring a collective mural to life!
November 7 / 6.00 – 8.00pm / Free, Pre-registration required

Family Play-Doh Game Jam
Design your own game!
November 9 / Noon – 3.00pm / Free, pre-registration required

Video Games Live Concert
At the Landmark Theater. Tickets can be purchased via Ticketmaster.
Landmark Theater / November 9 / 8.00 – 10.00pm / $15-$75

Beyond Monopoly: A Living Exhibit of Modern Board and Card Games
A game expo.
November 10 / Noon – 5.00pm / Free

Urban Video Project Avant Gaming Screening & Talk: Chris Stults
November 12 / 6.30pm / Free

Cosplay Family Day
Video Game themed activities for the whole family.
November 16 / Noon – 3.00pm / Free

The Gamer Age
The most comprehensive film to date on the world of video games.
December 1 / 1.00pm / Free