The Art of Video Games exhibit at the Toledo Museum of Art includes multiple events and guest speakers, beginning Friday and continuing through the end of September.
● Presentation and Book Signing: Chris Melissinos: Achievement Unlocked: How Video Games Captured the World’s Imagination, 7 p.m. Friday, Little Theater. Free.
Chris Melissinos, creator and guest curator of The Art of Video Games, traces the games from their humble beginnings to becoming a global phenomenon, explores why we love them, and reveals how this groundbreaking exhibition came to be. Afterward, he will sign copies of the exhibition catalog The Art of Video Games: From Pac-Man to Mass Effect, co-authored by Melissinos and Patrick O’Rourke. Copies of the catalog will be available for $40.
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● #GameOn! The Art of Video Games Opening Party: 8 p.m.-midnight Saturday, Main Museum.
Celebrate the arrival of The Art of Video Games with hands-on activities, a cash bar, light snacks, a game-inspired photobooth, and a rock-paper-scissors tournament. There also will be special appearances by industry insiders, plus food trucks, dancing, and a participatory video game with live actors on the TMA Terrace.
Dress code ranges from graphic T-shirts to video-game character costumes and everything in between. Admission is free for TMA members; $20 for adult nonmembers and $10 for children nonmembers ages 6 through 12.
The opening party will also feature a video-game character contest from 8:30 to 9:45 p.m, Museum Lower Level, and Inside the Industry: A Conversation with Holly Hirzel, Sr. Producer at XBOX and a Toledo native, for an informal presentation on what it's like to work in the video game industry, 9 p.m., Little Theater.
● Panel Discussion: Gaming for a Living: The Life of a Pro-Gamer: 7 p.m. July 18, Little Theater.
Many gamers earn a living playing video games and producing video-game events. This panel discussion brings together pro gamers and video-game personalities to discuss the business and lifestyle of the industry. Learn what goes into producing a major video game event and the best moments of competition and victory. Justin Yamek, co-founder of Beyond Gaming, will moderate the discussion. Free.
● Film: War Games (7 p.m. July 24, Little Theater. Free.1983):
● Panel Discussion: Level Complete: The Future of Video Games: 7 p.m. Aug. 15, Little Theater. Free.
Veteran video game innovators Nathaniel “Than” McClure, founder of Scientifically Proven; Navid Khonsari, creator of 1979 Revolution; and Blaine Graboyes, founder of Mash3 and CEO of Beyond Gaming, talk about the future of video games. With more than 20 years each producing games, the panelists now are pioneering new frontiers.
(1984): The Last Starfighter ● Film: 7 p.m. Aug. 21, Little Theater. Free.
● Game Day at TMA: noon to 5 p.m. Sept. 7, throughout the museum. Free. Organized by UT-BASH, the University of Toledo’s gaming organization, Game Day lets visitors test their skills with new and classic board games.
● Film: Indie Game: The Movie (2012): 7 p.m. Sept. 11, Little Theater. Free.
● Master’s Series Presentation: Brett Leonard: 6 p.m. Sept. 25, Peristyle. Free. Toledo native Brett Leonard, a film and video director, writer and producer, discusses the creative possibilities of digital technology during a conversation with museum director Brian Kennedy.
Leonard is best known for 1992’s The Lawnmower Man, a cautionary tale on virtual reality that employed cutting-edge computer animation and visual effects, and 1995’s Virtuosity, an action-thriller exploring nanotechnology in a cyberpunk future starring Denzel Washington and Russell Crowe.