In Person and Online
MAY 29–JULY 11, 2021
Featuring work by:
John James Anderson, Irene Chan, Wesley Clark, Nick DeFord, Tim Hutchings, Zofie King,
Casey Jex Smith, and Andrew Wodzianski
Featured image: Quarantine by Casey Jex Smith
For many of those who sheltered in isolation or in a small group this pandemic year, playing games has been a much needed source of entertainment and socialization. MAZES AND MAPS celebrates the importance of the game while putting focus on a particular aspect: cartography.
In this eight person exhibition, each artist has uniquely interpreted game maps through a balance of projection, labeling, and symbology. Some works are pure whimsy, but others are deeply reflective and socially acute.
Curator Andrew Wodzianski remarks, “MAZES AND MAPS excites me on a personal and professional level. Personally, gaming has been my favorite pastime since childhood. I've spent countless hours rolling dice, knocking pawns, and shuffling cards. It's a dream come true to combine my hobby-of-choice into a professional setting. The assembled artists push game iconography into thought-provoking areas that test my perception of entertainment.”
“Any game is dependent on rules, and games abstracted onto boards, paper, and screens are also reliant on visual design rules,” continues Wodzianski. “These artworks are rooted in the formal elements and principles of design. Patterns, rhythms, and contrasts abound. However, while games' visual aesthetics are in service to their rule sets, the pieces in MAZES AND MAPS frequently grow in twisting directions that are delightfully unexpected.”
UPDATE: A work of art has been removed from the online and in person gallery. Pyramid Atlantic and the artist decided to pull it from the gallery after it was brought to the artist's attention that the work was construed as offensive. The work in question includes a facsimile of the classic board game "Sorry!" as published since 1934. The board's design includes a yellow six-pointed star, which reads to many as a yellow Star of David. This symbol is associated with the persecution of Jews in the 20th century. Once the symbology and juxtaposed text were seen in this different, political context, the artist and Pyramid Atlantic decided to remove the work, and did so in less than 24 hours. Pyramid believes in political work and freedom of expression, but equally stands with all groups facing oppression and discrimination in all forms. While this piece was never intended as such, we would not want anything we present to be associated with hate. We are grateful to a community that continually makes us better. This incident has sparked dialogue around symbology, appropriation, and censorship which we plan to explore in upcoming programming.