Video Games as Culture: Mona Lisa Meets Duck Hunt

This article was originally published on Site of the Gaming Dead, a now-defunct video gaming blog, on April 21, 2010. I have attempted to recreate the article here, complete with images (when possible).


If ever you doubted the coolness of Italians, now’s the time to blast those doubts into the stratosphere, preferably using your Nintendo Zapper Light Gun. AIOMI, the Italian Association for Multimedia Interactive Works – Movement for Video Game Culture has released its first video spot promoting video game culture.

Video creators Nicola Ferrarese and Corrado Agnese combine high art (the Mona Lisa) and one of the most beloved video games of all time (Duck Hunt) in an effort to dispel the prejudices that video games are merely a childish form of entertainment. In the video, a museum-goer quietly examines the Mona Lisa…until he notices a strange gun-like device hanging from beneath its frame.

Then he hears a strange noise, apparently coming from the painting: quack. Quack Quack.

Experimenting, he picks up the gun and fires, and the distorted duck quacks its last…that is until another of its flock flies on-screen. The guy really gets into it then: aiming and (pardon the pun) ducking, shooting and aiming again. A security guard walks by and shakes his head, as if in resignation. So much for the old days, when museums were silent, he seems to be thinking. Now everyone’s discovering video games are as much a part of culture as Leonardo Da Vinci’s works!

The spot is just one of many we can expect from AIOMI in the coming months while they await the opening of ViGaMus, the Video Game Museum, in Rome in 2011. As if I didn’t have enough reasons to visit Italy! Expect to see more unique spots on video games as culture and art, along with updates on AIOMI’s progress as it gears up to open ViGaMus next year.