Keynote by Michael Samyn & Auriea Harvey at the Videojogos 2013 Conference
“The 20th century was not friendly towards beauty. Beauty was pushed aside by a disinterested appreciation of the sublime and a fascination with irony. Beauty was enlisted to seduce the public into over-consumption. Beauty was used as an insult for the weak and was considered irrelevant to the strong. Beauty was a lie. Beauty was accused of injustice, of being a tool for evil. Beauty was burned at the stake of humanism and democracy.
All this time, beauty remained. Dormant in a hidden mausoleum, surrounded by a magical forest. The time has come to awaken beauty with a kiss of love.
A century without beauty has stimulated sinister sentiments in mankind. A century without beauty has put the entire planet and its precious atmosphere in mortal peril. This is no coincidence. And as much as the absence of beauty has caused the deepest despair, so will the awakening of beauty in this new century inspire us to greatness once again.
Beauty will save the world.”
Keynote by Miguel Sicart at the Videojogos 2013 Conference
“In this talk I will discuss an aesthetics of videogames that places videogames in a history of art tradition that goes from the classic avant-garde to postmodern participatory art practices. Taking as a starting point a phenomenological understanding of play and games as a source for the aesthetic experience, I will argue that videogames share with art movements the focus on performativity and dialogue as an essential element of aesthesis. Drawing on a number of contemporary games and art pieces, I intend to propose an alternative way to address the complex issues of aesthetics and videogames.”
Keynote by Dan Pinchbeck at the Videojogos 2013 Conference
“The neuroscientist Antonio Damásio made a powerful argument that all rationality is actually based upon emotion and emotional memory in his works “Descartes’ Error” and “The Feeling of What Happens”. This was always a profound influence upon our philosophy of game design. We strive to move beyond mechanical complexity to emotional complexity, focusing on the internal interactions between player and game, rather than forming an experience through complex sequences of physical activity. For us, the dynamic emotional landscape created in real-time by the player’s journey through an interactive world is the very essence of gameplay, rather than cold, logical loops of easily definable feedback. Games are architectures for creating emotional experiences and everything else confuses the tool with the goal. This talk will focus on this central idea behind our work and how it relates to the wider issue of emotional interaction between a user and a cultural object.”