a non-profit gallery for the visual and performing arts

Zero East 4th St.
Richmond, VA 23224
2nd Entrance at: 31 East 3rd St.
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Radius 250 Radius 250 2017
Honorable Mention

Nathaniel St. Amour

Richmond, VA

'You Saved the Village 4 Times' by Nathaniel St. Amour

You Saved the Village 4 Times
Oil on canvas

Artist Statement

My work is about finding meaning and purpose from the virtual world. Large modern contemporary video games ask the player to mentally reside within the worlds they create, to forsake reality. These can be fantastical, realistic, or dystopian, but each environment is compelling and immersive. Each game also shares the quality of making the player feel as if they have accomplished something worthwhile. This can take the form of saving a village from dragons, or saving the universe from invasion. These worlds make us forget about the drudgery that is everyday life. They compress a lifetime of accomplishment into a single weekend. In contradiction to these thoughts, the virtual world is also disappointing in its intangibility and promise of personal enlightenment. No matter how many dragons you slay or virtual rewards you win, life outside of the game stays the same. The gamers in my paintings are weary of their virtual achievements. Many are tired and pallid while simultaneously smiling. They often exist within an idealized environment at odds with their inner turmoil. Their skin marks the time spent with the screen, while their bodies or scenes around them show the rewards they have received for their virtual efforts. Items like armor, treasure, and badges symbolize virtual accomplishment, while surrounding scenes show grateful villagers celebrating the player as a god-like figure.


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Page Last Updated On: 5/27/2017 11:31:07 AM