I cavalierly dismiss the argument that video games are not Art. As they evolve, in fact, video games will prove to be one of the highest forms of contemporary cultural expression, despite commercial intents or the fact that they often rely on the collective efforts of a multitude of talents.
My interactive installation, "CYMN" seeks to sidestep the dominant "Are Video Games Art?" debate by posing the inverse question: Can an interaction with art assume the characteristics of a game?
I am drawn to the look of a simply "framed" artwork: paintings, prints, photographs, videos and other media allowed to live and breathe on the expanse of a clean wall. At the same time, part of my art practice is concerned with pushing art towards an increased contemporary emphasis on making the "viewer" a more active part of the work. With CYMN, I challenged myself to make the "art on the wall" experience more interactive.
The title of the work is a play on "Simon," the name of the 1980s table top game that serves as inspiration, as well as a nod to the color scheme of the piece: cyan, yellow and magenta.
I expanded the original game-playing environment using touch screens stationed around an environment. The player must memorize a sound and light pattern related by these screens and touch each in the same sequence. The length of the sequence increases as the game progresses.
The installation is composed of three industry-standard touch screen monitors mounted to stainless steel stands. The touch instruments are synched to a custom application that recalls the game play of the original "Simon."
I feel that the paradigms of play in the context of art are a logical progression from what is termed "relational aesthetics:" artwork in which viewer assumes the role of participant; taking a more active role in the artistic experience.
CYMN is my artistic tribute to an icon in the history of electronic gaming, reinventing the spirit of the game by introducing it to the context of contemporary art. With CYMN, I seek to make play an aesthetic experience.