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While the Eastman Kodak Company's early picture contests were national - and later international - there was no shortage of submissions from New York City photographers. A selection of photos from 1929 to the early 1940s.

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 From Pac-Man to Mass Effect

Book description from Welcome Books:

In the forty years since the first Magnavox Odyssey pixel winked on in 1972, the home video game industry has undergone a mind-blowing evolution. Fueled by unprecedented advances in technology, boundless imaginations, and an insatiable addiction to fantastic new worlds of play, the video game has gone supernova, rocketing two generations of fans into an ever-expanding universe where art, culture, reality, and emotion collide.

As a testament to the cultural impact of the game industrys mega morph, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, with curator and author Chris Melissinos, conceived the forthcoming exhibition, The Art of Video Games,which will run from March 16 to September 30, 2012.* New York publisher Welcome Books will release the companion book this March.

Melissinos presents video games as not just mere play, but richly textured emotional and social experiences that have crossed the boundary into culture and art.

Along with a team of game developers, designers, and journalists, Melissinos chose a pool of 240 games across five different eras to represent the diversity of the game world. Criteria included visual effects, creative use of technologies, and how world events and popular culture manifested in the games. The museum then invited the public to go online to help choose the games. More than 3.7 million votes (from 175 countries) later, the eighty winners featured in The Art of Video Games exhibition and book were selected.

From the Space Invaders of the seventies to sophisticated contemporary epics BioShock and Uncharted 2, Melissinos examines each of the winning games, providing a behind-the-scenes look at their development and innovation, and commentary on the relevance of each in the history of video games.

Over 100 composite images, created by Patrick O'Rourke, and drawn directly from the games themselves, illustrate the evolution of video games as an artistic medium, both technologically and creatively.

Additionally, The Art of Video Games includes fascinating interviews with influential artists and designers—from pioneers such as Nolan Bushnell to contemporary innovators including Warren Spector, Tim Schafer and Robin Hunicke.

The foreword was written by Elizabeth Broun, director of the Smithsonian American Art Museum and Mike Mika, noted game preservationist and prolific developer, contributed the introduction the introduction. *After Washington D.C., the exhibition travels to several cities across the United States, including Boca Raton (Museum of Art), Seattle (EMP Museum), Yonkers, NY (Hudson River Museum) and Flint, MI (Flint Institute of Arts). For the latest confirmed dates and venues, please visit The Art of Video Games exhibition page at

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A young man rode past art hanging as part of the ‘Works in Progress’ installation at the Atlantic Yards site in Brooklyn on Oct. 19. ArtBridge installed large reproductions of work from 20 Brooklyn artists on the scaffolding surrounding the stadium’s construction site. (Bryan Derballa for The Wall Street Journal )

Handlers walked camels outside the Radio City Music Hall on Oct. 17. Three camels, two sheep, and a donkey were on hand for rehearsal of the Radio City Christmas Spectacular, which starts Nov. 11 and runs through Jan 2, 2012. (Kevin Hagen for The Wall Street Journal)

The Jacob Jefferies Band played at Rockwood Music Hall on the Lower East Side during the CMJ Musical Festival on Oct. 19. (Bryan Derballa for The Wall Street Journal )

The dance troupe Douglas Dunn & Dancers performed on stage at a block party celebrating the 50th anniversary of the La Mama Theatre in Manhattan on Oct. 16. The off-off-Broadway theater was founded in 1961 by Ellen Stewart. (Kevin Hagen for The Wall Street Journal)

Barneys New York is marking 20 years in the business for designer Christian Louboutin. Here, one section of a window installation in Manhattan on Oct. 20. (Ramsay de Give for The Wall Street Journal )

Pedestrians walked in the rain in Manhattan on Oct. 19. (Ramsay de Give for The Wall Street Journal)

Amanda Schachter and Alex Levi of Slo Architecture put the finishing touches on Harvest Dome, a giant cupola made of recycled umbrellas that will float at Inwood Hill Park later this fall. (Daniella Zalcman for The Wall Street Journal )

Benjamin Gudzy, 9, of West Orange, N.J., and Logan Rinaldi, 11, of Yonkers, N.Y., tried to look into a mausoleum during a scavenger hunt at the Woodlawn Cemetery in the Bronx on Oct. 16. Kids looked for gravestones of New York politicians, oak and maple tree leaves, and distinctive monuments. (Kevin Hagen for The Wall Street Journal)

Puppeteer Ronny Wasserstrom entertained kids at the block party celebrating the 50th anniversary of the La Mama Theatre in Manhattan on Oct. 16. (Kevin Hagen for The Wall Street Journal)

Bumble and bumble instructor Sabrina Michals, left, showed an Afghan woman styling techniques as part of a training program for Afghan entrepreneursm sponsored by the U.S. State Department and BPeace. (Bryan Derballa for The Wall Street Journal )

The Madison lunchbox with chicken at Duo Restaurant & Lounge, 72 Madison Ave. in New York, N.Y. (Ramsay de Give for The Wall Street Journal)

Brian Shimkovitz, a DJ and blogger who uses the name Awesome Tapes From Africa, worked in his Lower East Side apartment on Oct. 14. (Ramin Talaie for The Wall Street Journal)

Trainer Clif Spade at the Kiwi Sweat Spin Class inside the Chelsea Market in New York on Oct. 17. (Ramsay De Give for The Wall Street Journal)

Alex Hutton, a scenic artist, worked on a set piece at the Production Resource Group facility in New Windsor, N.Y., where the set for the Broadway show ‘Godspell’ is being designed and manufactured. (Rob Bennett for The Wall Street Journal)

From left to right, Big Bird, Bill Irwin and Joey from ‘War Horse’ during the curtain call of ‘Puppet Palooza,’ the New Victory Theatre’s annual New 42nd Street Gala, on Oct. 17. (Astrid Stawiarz for The Wall Street Journal)

Singer Jon Bon Jovi at Soul Kitchen in Red Bank, N.J, on Oct. 19. (Amy Sussman for The Wall Street Journal )

Aschee Waterman, 11, center, and Amira Rosenbush, 15, right, painted on a roll-up gate as part of an interactive show at a pop-up gallery in Prospect Lefferts Gardens, Brooklyn, on Oct. 18. (Bryan Derballa for The Wall Street Journal)

Kawaun Corprein, a student at Alain L. Locke Elementary School in Harlem, learned the basic techniques of rugby on Oct. 19. (Ramsay de Give for The Wall Street Journal)

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