Thursday, August 6, 2015

Game On!

This spring and summer, Museum visitors have taken a peek at Playful Pastimes in the atrium walkway window boxes – an assortment of silly scenes inspired by familiar games, from Go Fish to Twister, that invite visitors to think about their favorite ways to play. Created by AmeriCorps members Lucia Carroll and Savannah McMullen with guidance from Exhibits Director Robin Meisner and Exhibits Developer Jessica Neuwirth, the boxes are a mix of clever plays on names and visually appealing interpretations of popular games.

Savannah and Lucia's work in progress

On their process… 

Savannah: "Coming up with the games themselves wasn’t hard, it was more about what we could do with each game. We had a couple of misses where we ran into problems – we were planning on doing Candyland for a long time but we couldn’t get the textures right to make it look like candy."

Lucia: "Or even not just being able to think of an idea we felt was as successful or did the other boxes justice. We tried to be strategic about the games that we picked."

Savannah: "It took a lot of sketches to plan out the tiny space. We had to think spatially – how the whole box could be filled, front to back and top to bottom, without being too crowded. We did brainstorms on games and then sketches, and then different sketches and more brainstorms!"

Lucia: "For me, they were consistently in process, always being edited, until the due date. There’s always something more you can add to them, but I had to figure out what was feasible and go from there."

On materials…

Savannah: "It was mostly about what would work to make the game miniature – using astroturf for grass, wine toppers for tiny chairs, benches and thrones made out of popsicle sticks… We were really open to everything and the potential of materials."

Lucia: "I feel pretty proud that we made most of the stuff in the boxes – we made a concerted effort to make our miniatures and use found items."

“It’s fun to see parents and kids looking at them together,” Savannah concluded. “We wanted to make them straightforward enough to figure out but also enjoyable for everyone – something for the kids to look at that also amuse the parents as much as possible.”

They most certainly are – play along over the next few weeks and see many games you can figure out!

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