An Art World for Artgames

  • Felan Parker York University

Abstract

Bringing together the insights of assemblage theory, pragmatist aesthetics, and the sociology of art, this paper examines the cultural legitimation of ‘artgames’ as a category of indie games with particularly high cultural status. Passage (PC, Mac, Linux, iOS, 2007) serves as a case study, demonstrating how a diverse range of factors and processes, including a conducive ‘opportunity space,’ changes in production, distribution, and reception, and the emergence of a critical discourse, collectively constitute an assemblage or ‘art world’ that establishes artgames as legitimate art (Baumann, 2007a; 2007b).