Steve Color (2007) - Nikolaus Baumgarten


Steve Color is a multi-platform computer game that allows the user to pursue "act's of vandalism with color to historical sites" including Schloss Neuschwanstein and the St Basils Kathedral.


The Pause Button


Image: Ian Bogost , Guru Meditation, 2009 (Still)

For those of us who suffer from Continual Partial Awareness, a new game has arrived that might just succeed in capturing your attention for more than 2 seconds. Created by video game scholar and critic Ian Bogost, Guru Meditation forces the player to remain still and focus. That's it. Move or otherwise signal distraction, however, and the player must begin again. "Guru Meditation" originated as an in house meditation game developed for the Amiga Joyboard by the company's programmers in order to ease their frustration with the temperamental system, and is better known as the mysterious expression appearing in the Amiga's fatal error message. Bogost revived this tidbit of Amiga history by producing a contemporary version for the Atari VCS and the iPhone. (Yes, you read that correctly.) Beyond geekdom, Bogost claims that the project stems from his fascination with the historical intersection between Silicon Valley and hippie counter-culture, which lead him to the game, along with others like it. To get into the guru-oove, click here.


Night at the Museum



Tonight at MOCA in Los Angeles, Rhizome-commissioned artists Knifeandfork (Brian House and Sue Huang) will invite visitors to race remote-control cars through the museum's current exhibition, "A Changing Ratio: Painting and Sculpture from the Collection." Titled MOCA Grand Prix, the race marks the final event of Knifeandfork's three-month Engagement Party residency at the museum. Each Wi-Fi-enabled car is mounted with a camera, allowing players to remotely direct the cars through the space via a videogame interface showing the car’s point of view. Awards will be presented for the fastest times of the evening. This event is free and open to the public.


Required Reading



"Abstract: Chiptune refers to a collection of related music production and performance practices sharing a history with video game soundtracks. The evolution of early chiptune music tells an alternate narrative about the hardware, software, and social practices of personal computing in the 1980s and 1990s. By digging into the interviews, text files, and dispersed ephemera that have made their way to the Web, we identify some of the common folk-historical threads among the commercial, noncommercial, and ambiguously commercial producers of chiptunes with an eye toward the present-day confusion surrounding the term chiptune. Using the language of affordances and constraints, we hope to avoid a technocratic view of the inventive and creative but nevertheless highly technical process of creating music on computer game hardware."


General Web Content


This ongoing series explores significant developments on the internet, like this new hot thing called twitter that everyone's been talking about. We've culled the, uh, "twitterverse" to bring you some of the more curious and unique accounts out there (plus a few entertaining twitter spin-offs). Feel free to add links or suggestions in the comments section.

Twitter feed created using the "Tweeting RFID Cat Door". Description from the site Tweeting Cat Door:

Each cat has a small RFID tag on the collar. When a cat is in the close proximity of the door, a small RFID reader reads the tag and if the cat is authorized, a servo will unlock the cat door. The RFID reader and the servo controller are connected to an old laptop. The software on the laptop is written in Delphi and for each "cat door event" is sending a Twitter message and a picture to twitter.com.

Twitter feed of injuries by Petra Cortright.


The unofficial Denton Mugshot twitter for Denton, Texas. Programmed by a UNT art photography student, drawing attention to how much public info we put online.

The Twittering office chair "tweets" (posts a Twitter update) upon the detection of natural gas such as that produced by human flatulence.

The twitter feed from "On Kawara"

Faces made with unicode

Documentation of documentation from vvork (not affiliated with vvork.com), started by Guthrie Lonergan, managed by Tom Moody.



A List Of Every NBA Player On Twitter

Twitter, etc.


Were you on twitter before Ashton Kutcher? Find out here.


Twetris uses the twitter timeline to create blocks for a tetris game.


New Museum Announces Artists in "The Generational: Younger Than Jesus"


Image: Ryan Trecartin, not yet titled, 2007 (3-channel video and installation)

For a little over a year now, our affiliate, the New Museum, has been busy organizing the exhibition "The Generational: Younger Than Jesus." With periodization used as the default lens through which to understand art history, the exhibition raises the idea of generations in art as a question and a problem. The first edition looks at artists born after 1976 to coincide with the demographic that is popularly labeled Generation Y. Each installment of this ongoing triennial exhibition will approach the subject differently. The curators Massimiliano Gioni, Laura Hoptman, and Rhizome's own Lauren Cornell called on over 150 professionals in the field, artists, teachers, critics, curators, bloggers, to recommend artists--material which became the core research for the exhibition. The New Museum announced the list of artists last night, and it's worth noting that quite a few of them have been featured here on Rhizome in the past, such as Mark Essen, Cory Arcangel, AIDS-3D, Guthrie Lonergan, Ida Ekblad, Shilpa Gupta and Ryan Trecartin.


"Persuasive Games: The Proceduralist Style" on Gamasutra


Persuasive Games: The Proceduralist Style by Ian Bogost

Ian Bogost describes what he sees as "proceduralist style" in the "art games" of Jason Rohrer, Jonathan Blow, and Rod Humble in his article "Persuasive Games: The Proceduralist Style" on Gamasutra. Bogost defines the "proceduralist" genre, typified by the work of these particular designers, by their contemplative mode, minimalist design, and conceptually driven structure. In the conclusion, Bogost emphasizes that these characteristics emerged in response to the direction of more mainstream games. What follows is a short excerpt from that section, which I found particularly interesting, but the article is worth reading in its entirety. The comments are worth checking out as well, as readers not only parse Bogost's argument but also grapple with the stigma surrounding art criticism (which appears to be more pronounced within this context).

In artgames of the sort in question, the procedural rhetoric does not argue a position, but rather characterizes an idea. These games say something about how an experience of the world works, how it feels to experience or to be subjected to some sort of situation: marriage, mortality, regret, confusion, whatever.

As a style, proceduralism takes a stand contrary to conventional wisdom in game design. At a time when video games focus on the realistic simulation of experiences, proceduralism offers metaphorical treatments of ideas.

At a time when video games focus on player gratification, proceduralism invites player introspection. At a time when video games focus on facilitating user creativity, proceduralism lays bare the subjective truth of an individual creator.

Whether or not the style has a stable future in its own right, it issues a specific challenge to our conception of our medium from within. And that if nothing else is most certainly a feature of art.


FILE 09 Open Call



Art and technology festival FILE, based in Sao Paulo, Brazil, is seeking projects for this year's fest, which will occur from July 27 to August 31, 2009. Categories include media art, installation, game art, sound art, and a symposium. For the application and more information, visit FILE 2009.


Unattended Luggage (2008) - Terry Cavanagh


For those dealing with the insanity of holiday travel this winter, this one's for you. Unattended Luggage is a short, simple game in which the player progresses from each stage by collecting all the packages in the room. Airport security guards block the player from moving luggage, and the trick is to dodge them while carrying this task out. The game's designers, Terry Cavanagh, increpare and Alteisentier, claim they made Unattended Luggage while waiting in a Dublin airport.

uluggage3b copy.jpg


(via Indie Games)