A GAIN For One Is a GAIN for all

The Game Arts International Network (GAIN) is a registered not-for-profit focused on interconnecting existing game arts organizations and nurturing new structures in emerging regions.

As games are increasingly recognized for their cultural value, local collectives and organizations with a focus on games as a form of creative expression have begun to emerge all over the world. These entities have the potential to be an enduring resource for creators in this field if they’re able to meet the challenges of sustainability and renewal.

We are getting rolling by helping people to…

Learn About Game Arts Topics

Game Arts Curators Kit

Want to exhibit or present videogames but don’t know where to start? Check out the Game Arts Curators Kit, a 70 pg handbook written and edited by over 25 experienced folk in the field, spanning the practical to the political, the ethical to the aesthetic. Created during GAIA 2021 with the collaboration of various experts in the field.

Game Arts International Assembly 

Co-founded by Lu Oulton, GAIA is an intimate in-person symposium for game art curators and game community organizers to level up their professional development and connect with their international peers. In addition to on site talks sharing personal experiences, playful workshops, and practical sessions, GAIA  includes field trips to different locations in the city. It happens every two years in a different city (Buenos Aires in 2019, Toronto in 2023, and Barcelona in 2025). Subscribe to our newsletter at the bottom of this page for updates on when to apply.

Microphone GAIN Podcast

We host online sessions to share information of interest to game arts organizers and curators. The format we’re starting with will be a live discussion between two people, one with experience on a topic and one seeking more information on that topic, while anyone else who’s interested can listen in. At the end this audience will be able to add their comments and ask questions. We recorded these sessions and released them as podcasts.

You can search for Microphone GAIN on your podcast app or manually add our RSS Feed, or view all the episodes here

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Get Inspired

Change the Rules Comic Tour

Our tenth and final stop is next week at A MAZE. Berlin, where Marie will be doing a workshop and a panel about alternative modes of videogame production like unions and co-ops. (GAIA will also be doing a series of microtalks about building creative communities.)

Since we first launched the project at Toronto Games Week 2023, we have traveled the world facilitating discussions and giving out thousands of free comic books. Most recently we were in San Francisco at GDC, the largest game developer conference in the world, doing a packed panel…

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as well as presenting at the unconference Lost Levels in the park that day…

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Earlier this year, we also launched the project in Taipei…

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…where participants created zines about work…

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…as they did at workshops in Tokyo and Kyoto…

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If you didn’t catch it on tour, you can still download PDFs of the white paper and the comic!

Thanks to Sagan Yee and Pablo F. Quarta for taking photos.

GAIA Online Talk or Workshop Open Call

GAIA returns to the internet September 2024!

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The online version is not merely a warm up to the in-person edition (which will take place in September 2025 in Barcelona) but a highly-accessible version of GAIA, for anyone around the globe who might not be able to attend the in-person meetups, and a way to gather larger parts of our growing community.

We are now working on a program to share knowledge between game arts organizers and curators and would love to have your input. If you feel like being an active part of these online sessions this is your opportunity to propose a talk or activity! You can fill in now the Open Call Form. For inspiration check out the programming at our previous online edition.

The deadline for submission is May 6th, 2024.

We welcome established as well as emergent game culture producers, curators, community organizers, art curators and museum professionals, streamers, critics, academics and all professionals who are working, or intend to work, with videogames as cultural objects. 

This year GAIA is being produced by Luján Oulton (Now Play This), Jim Munroe and Marie LeBlanc Flanagan (Game Arts International Network), and Shalev Moran. Visit our newly updated GAIA website for more info.

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Videogame Arts Around the World in 2023

From special guest editor, María Luján Oulton… We are bringing back to life GAIN’s annual roundup newsletter, an inspirational collection of game arts related photos from events around the globe.

For the first time since 2019 we reached out to friends, colleagues and like-minded groups asking to share their favorite pictures from the videogame arts event or project they worked on in 2023. The result is events from 23 cities covering five continents. The game arts community is coming back in a big way!

If you like it, please spread the link (or retweet) and let us know about any events or people that have not been named here so we can include them in future roundups.

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Continue reading “Videogame Arts Around the World in 2023”
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Find Game Arts People In Your Area

This is a non-exhaustive and unofficial list of entities who currently showcase and nurture games made primarily for creative reasons — including organizations, collectives and events. You can add to the map via this form. Contact jim@gameartsinternational.network for more info. NOTE: This is for informational purposes and does not imply any relationship between GAIN and the listed entities.

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Get on the GAIN Train!

After we gather some steam, we can take on bigger issues like cultural advocacy to challenge the scapegoating of games, establish art residencies to cross-fertilize our communities, and lots of other fun stuff!

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About Us

GAIN STAKEHOLDERS include game arts organizers and curators in Los Angeles, Montreal, Buenos Aires, Vancouver, Madrid, Ottawa, Austin, Seattle, Tel Aviv, Halifax, New York, Berlin, Melbourne, Portland, Reykjavík, Pittsburgh, London, Boston, Copenhagen, Cape Town and Toronto.

JIM MUNROE founded GAIN. Prior to that he co-founded the Hand Eye Society, the world’s first videogame arts organization, and was its executive director for seven years. While there he produced the Torontron indie arcade cabinet, the Fancy Videogame Party, The WordPlay Festival of Writerly Games, and Camp Make-a-Game. His games have been showcased at Sundance and Cannes. You can reach him at jim@gameartsinternational.network.

MARIE LEBLANC FLANAGAN is an artist working in the playful spaces between people, especially related to connection and community. Marie builds experimental video games, playful installations, and cooperative experiences. Marie has an enduring fondness for the infinite possibilities of trash. Marie founded Wyrd Arts Initiatives (a nationwide nonprofit dedicated to encouraging, documenting, and connecting creative expression across Canada), A Kind of Play (workshops on making experimental games), Drone Day (an annual international celebration of drone music communities) and co-founded Imaginary Residency (an artist-run online residency). You can reach Marie at marie@gameartsinternational.network.

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