Together with our partners at NS Dokumentationszentrum Cologne, we just hosted the conference “Game | Museum. Building a bridge” that dealt with the role of digital media and game-based formats in museum practice. For two days, we delved into the interplay between museology, museum education, game development, and game studies and listened to experts from different disciplines to explore the intersections betweeen their fields of study as well as opportunities for synergy effects.

We want to thank everyone that attended the conference, be it as a speaker or a guest! We really enjoyed the diverse insights, the lively discussions that ensued not only after the talks but spilled over to the cofffe breaks, and the overall constructive atmosphere! We aimed to build a bridge between the disciplines and are very glad to have achieved exactly that.

The first day kicked off with a presentation of “Remote Island” by Bastian Schlang (NS DOK), a “walk-in computer game” in which the participants had to face the challenges together as a team. The following talks tackled the subject at hand from all kinds of different angles, be it in form of best practices, peeks into the concept workshops, presentations of participatory projects or pondering game materials as artefacts. Thomas Hensel (Hochschule Pforzheim) closed the first conference day with his keynote “‘Harold HALIBUT’ or The birth of the video game and museum from the spirit of the Wunderkammer”.

The second day started with another keynote by Christian Stein (Gamelab Berlin) called “From exhibition space to playing field: Homo Ludens visits the museum” which was followed by talks on the representation of art in digital game worlds, museums as walking simulators, gamification as exhibition didactics, or the use of tabletops as conversation starters.

In the afternoon, Klaus Becker, Vice President for Research and Knowledge Transfer at TH Köln gave an outlook on the next steps within the Career Cluster “Game Studies at the Museum” that partially funded the conference. Finally, Benjamin Beil (Universität zu Köln) concluded the second day with his keynote “From playground to metamuseum: On playing in exhibitions and exhibiting in games”

Many thanks go out to our cooperation partners, the University of Cologne, the NS Documentation Center Cologne, and the TH Köln, which funded the symposium as part of its Career Cluster.

Game | Museum: Building a Bridge
November 16-17, 2023
NS Documentation Center / CGL