A machine for playing in.
Quarantine, for most of us, has become a suspended indeterminate status. With the help of emerging technologies, almost all aspects of our social life are now enhanced within the digital metaverse- from love and play to workspace and raves; intensifying the results to see how different things can get.
Is it possible to explore the spatial and interactive possibilities of virtual environments as a space for new thoughts and aesthetics? Especially ones that come forward from culture and technology? What platforms can be used for the modeling of the new discourses and for the articulation of new works, ideas, and theories?
How does one make freedom and playfulness – traditionally granted to artists, accessible to a wider audience? And, how do we design situations or objects that stimulate activity and participation, that could lead to a ripple effect, transforming a viewer or a social context?
The history of creativity is a recurring story of adopting, accepting, inventing, and manipulating material constraints. By learning how others made playgrounds before us, we can better make our own.
-Ian Bogost, Play Anything
Can games be the new medium for this discourse? Statistics show that on average 40% of the human population play games online. Games are not tied to one prior medium but instead combine many. They connect visual arts culture and computer science into one spatial system. Structures and Aesthetics of game spaces might be incorporated into design approaches that blur boundaries between spatial practice in the virtual and physical. It is a medium capable of producing playful, quantitative, yet also qualitative utopias that can speak about the real world. Games can offer alternatives to traditional systems of governance and regulation.
We, at TIFA Working Studios, would like to experiment with the virtual space of games and elements of video game design through an interdisciplinary and collaborative virtual conference. This year Cyberia Virtual aims to lay a foundation for experimentation through play using key principles from video game design like interaction, world design, narrative, character design, and aesthetics.