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E3 News: Digital Art Elevated In Exhibition and Interactive Museum

Explore the art of gaming as it makes its way in art history at E3Expo via an art exhibition and a multimedia, interactive museum called "The History of Video Games."

There are 16 pieces of artwork selected from more than 120 submissions by a jury of interactive entertainment industry art veterans and experts from the traditional art field to be featured in "Into the Pixel," a juried exhibition of computer and videogame art on display at this year's E3Expo.

"Into the Pixel," runs May 13-14, 2004, in the Concourse Lobby at the Los Angeles Convention Center, accessible to the more than 60,000 interactive entertainment industry executives, designers, developers, animators, journalists and retailers who attend E3Expo. An "online gallery" also features the artists' work at www.E3Insider.com. The exhibition is a joint project of E3Expo, The Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences and The Graphic Arts Council of LACMA (LA County Museum of Art), and is presented by Spike TV with generous donations from Progressive Beverages/Han Soju, Palm Bay Imports/Cavit Wine and Fuze Beverages.

Intellivision Productions joined forces with the organizers of the Classic Gaming Expo (CGE) to create a multimedia, interactive museum called "The History of Video Games." Located in Kentia Hall, the museum is open to all E3 attendees during the Expo. Intellivisions own original game programmers, the Blue Sky Rangers, creators of such classic games as ASTROSMASH, SPACE ARMADA and NIGHT STALKER; will be on hand to speak about the early days of the videogame industry and their involvement in the videogame revolution.

The "History of Video Games" museum delves into the rich annals of videogaming history, starting with the Magnavox Odyssey, the first-ever home videogame system. The museum also features the early 1980s consoles such as the Atari 2600, the Intellivision and Colecovision and moves on to todays multi-faceted home gaming systems. Nearly every videogame console, as well as their respective game collections and stories behind how they were created, are on hand for attendees to play. Attendees will even experience a "time warp" into a classic 1980s-style living room.

"Intellivision is extremely excited and proud to be the sponsor of the History of Video Games museum," said Keith Robinson, president/co-founder of Intellivision Prods. Inc. and an original game programmer for Intellivision. "The guys at the Classic Gaming Expo have a deep affection for the history and the games that started it all and have always been a strong supporter of Intellivision Prods. We are thrilled to give attendees the opportunity to learn how this whole videogame craziness started, as well as give them the opportunity to play the original games that are now the forefathers to the ones they play on todays consoles."

In addition to the home gaming consoles, the "History of Video Games" museum features more than 30 classic stand-up arcade games, all available for attendees to play. These stand-up arcade games are the original arcade machines found in every pizza place, liquor store and shopping mall during the 1980s. Attendees may relive their high scoring days on such games as DONKEY KONG, MS. PAC-MAN and TEMPEST. One unique hands-on display will feature the first home computer systems, such as the Apple II and Commodore 64.

After the fall of Mattel Electronics, the maker of Intellivision, the game programmers (coined the Blue Sky Rangers), who were friends as well as coworkers, remained in touch. Robinson and fellow ranger Stephen Roney founded Intellivision in 1997, bought the rights to the Intellivision system and games and made them PC and Macintosh compatible for millions to relive the excitement of Intellivision. For more information on Intellivision or other retrogames and systems, please visit: www.intellivisionlives.com.

Commenting on the "Into the Pixel" art display, Doug Lowenstein, president of the Entertainment Software Assoc., the trade association representing U.S. computer and videogame publishers and the owner of E3Expo said, "With the increasing recognition of computer and videogames as an important part of our culture, there is also a growing appreciation for the digital artistry that underlies many games. This groundbreaking exhibition celebrates the artistic achievements of today's computer and videogame artists, and dramatizes the fact that such art deserves to be viewed with the same respect as other more traditional contemporary artistic expression."

"The 120 or so submissions for this art show had a wide range of subjects and artistic approaches," says juror Matt Gleason. "I looked at each as if it were a painting. The pieces I chose, many of which made the final cut, all shared a sophisticated sense of composition. It became a quick study in what techniques were being taught to designers and which were being invented by artists."

Into the Pixel Jury was comprised of Gleason, editor and publisher COAGULA ART JOURNAL; Celia Pierce, associate director, Univ. of Calif. Game Culture & Technology Lab; David Perry, president/founder, Shiny Entertainment; Jason Rubin, co-founder, Naughty Dog; Billy Shire, owner, La Luz de Jesus Gallery.

"Spike TV is proud to sponsor such a worthy event which celebrates the incredible achievements in video game artwork," said Albie Hecht, president, Spike TV, and the presenting sponsor of "Into the Pixel."

For more information about "Into the Pixel" art, artist and jurors, please check out www.e3artexpo.com.

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