Mediateca Expandida. Arcadia The World Game, the Game of War and the Do-Nothing Machine
by José Luis de Vicente
Game of War, London Fringe Festival ©Class Wargames 2007
Mediateca Expandida. Arcadia José Luis de Vicente
José Luis de Vicente is a cultural researcher and a journalist specialised in innovation, creativity and technology.
Mediateca Expandida. Arcadia LittleBigPlanet™ (2008)
Game for PlayStation®3 (PS3TM) Developer: Media Molecule Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
Mediateca Expandida. Arcadia Jetset (2008)
Game for iPhone, iPod Touch, Facebook. Credits: Ian Bogost, Gerard LaFond, Nico Massi, Noah Witherspoon, Alejandro Quarto, Corey Jackson
Jetset. Persuasive Games
Mediateca Expandida. Arcadia Global Conflicts: Latin America (2008)
Unity3D game engine, 1 GHz CPU 512 MB RAM. Acknowledgements: Media+, Danida
Global Conflicts: Latin America. Serious Games Interactive
Mediateca Expandida. Arcadia Global Conflicts: Palestine (2007)
Unity3D game engine, 1 GHz CPU 512 MB RAM. Acknowledgements: Media+, Danida
Global Conflicts: Palestine.Serious Games Interactive
Mediateca Expandida. Arcadia Topobo (2004-2009)
Custom construction toy and modular robotic system with embedded kinetic memory. Thanks to MIT Media Lab for supporting the work
Topobo. Photo: Enrique Cárdenas
Mediateca Expandida. Arcadia Switch Pitch (2003)
Colour-flipping ball. Courtesy: Hoberman Designs
Hoberman Design. Switch Pitch
Mediateca Expandida. Arcadia Hoberman Sphere (1995)
Expanding toy sphere
Hoberman Designs. Hobberman Sphere
Mediateca Expandida. Arcadia Crayon Physics Deluxe (2006)
Videogame for PC
Petri Purho. Crayon Physics Deluxe
Mediateca Expandida. Arcadia echochrome™ (2008)
Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment Europe Developer: Game Yaruoze! echochrome: un desafío para tu mente ©2008 Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. Published by Sony Computer Entertainment Europe. All rights reserved.
Mediateca Expandida. Arcadia World of Goo (2008)
Physics based puzzle / construction game
Mediateca Expandida. Arcadia
Games from a culture of innovation

Mediateca Expandida. Arcadia

Games from a culture of innovation



"Toys are not really as innocent as they look. Toys and games are the preludes to serious ideas". 
Charles Eames 

Over the last ten years, the art world, academia and industry have been deploying a whole plethora of initiatives aimed at securing the status of the videogame as a medium in its own right and defending the potential of gaming as a creative strategy. LABoral has made a notable contribution to this process with its trilogy of exhibitions titled Gameworld, Playware and Homo Ludens Ludens, perhaps the most exhaustive exploration of the theme to date by any cultural institution. 

Now that artists’ interest in the videogame no longer raises eyebrows; now that many universities have Game Studies departments and the Independent Games movement is finding its own space and public, what are the new horizons for the game as language and as industry? 

Arcadia: Games from a Culture of Innovation is posited as an observatory to explore the main lines of investigation undertaken today in the various fields of contemporary game culture; from the design of toys and games to the independent development of videogames, not overlooking game art and so-called 'serious games'. 

The thirty plus projects selected for the exhibition, most of which have been produced over the last three years, are examples of an emerging sensibility that oversteps our preconceived ideas on the function and form of games. 

New genres like "slow games" by Tale of Tales, that eschew adrenaline and instead look to submerge us in all-enveloping atmospheres; studios and designers like Jason Rohrer and Thatgamecompany, whose emotional and disturbing games are located beyond the adolescent imaginary of commercial videogames; sensual anti-narrative experiences like the exceptional Eliss by Steph Thirion... and games that comment and editorialise on contemporary social, political and environmental crises. 

Stretching beyond the confines of software, Arcadia also explores areas like the design of products and gadgets, the toy and self-construction culture, and game hacking. 

Arcadia is the first project to be presented at Mediateca expandida, a new space at LABoral conceived to experiment with new presentation formats that foster sociability and go beyond the limits of the conventional exhibition.

Curated by: José Luis de Vicente
Spatial design: Longo +  Roldán
Graphic design: The Studio of Fernando Gutiérrez

Institutional Introduction


One of the challenges and indeed achievements of contemporary art is that it transcends classic formats which are physically constrained by spatial and temporal dimensions and subject to the passing of time. Similarly, the evolutional process of art has gradually broken with traditional rules and classic canons, doing away with the distance between the spectator and the artwork until ultimately arriving to the very dissolution of the concept of “work” understood as a palpable and unaltered reality. 

Arcadia is a step forward, a bold cutting-edge proposal where playing is an art experience, the spectator the main actor of the play, the street is the canvas, and the city, the art itinerary and the very art creation in itself. Different tools and instruments are the warp with which citizens weave art: photography, mobile telephony, messages, video consoles, GPS… New technology as art device. 

Cajastur is extremely pleased to be involved in this initiative, especially given its audacity, its exploration of the art universe and because it offers citizens new experiences. The individual as main actor and participant in art creation is a new horizon that requires a path in which Cajastur wishes to take part. Indeed, that is one of the aims of the social and cultural activities promoted by our institution: to take art to the ordinary citizen, to bring art to every corner of our region and to promote the involvement of society as a whole in culture. 

We are aware that, as has happened historically, the avant-garde always provokes initial rejection. But it is equally true that whenever the axis of that avant-garde is participation then the reaction is one of acceptance. At Cajastur we are firmly convinced that this initiative will be a milestone in the evolution of the concept of art and in the ongoing search implicit in art creation.


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