Telfair Museums hosts the first museum survey of the work of visionary videogame designer Keita Takahashi (Japanese, b. 1975). Takahashi is noted for his outside-the-box approach to game development, game mechanics, aesthetics, and music.
Initially trained as an artist, Takahashi received a degree in Fine Art and Sculpture from Musashino Art University in Tokyo. He later worked at Namco, where he became the lead developer of the sleeper hit game Katamari Damacy (2004). The iconic game won awards, spawned sequels, influenced popular culture beyond the game world, and was one of the first video games acquired for the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art. Takahashi has gone on to develop other notable games including We Love Katamari and Noby Noby Boy for Namco, the independent game Alphabet (with Adam Saltsman), the AR game Woorld, and the forthcoming Wattam. Takahashi has also collaborated with other artists and developers to create immersive installations for festivals and museums including Tenya Wanya Teens, operated with a unique 16-button controller, and reimagined versions of classic videogames, made in collaboration with New York-based collective Babycastles. Takahashis playful aesthetic extends beyond games to original drawings and playground design. Throughout his work, Takahashi exhibits a sensibility that eschews the violent tendencies of many games for a vision that is by turns child-like, punk, profound, and innovative.
The exhibition includes examples of Takahashis early sculpture and animations, playground designs, major game releases, and several of his independent games and collaborative installations. Presented in conjunction with Telfairs annual PULSE Art + Technology Festival, the exhibition will highlight Takahashis long-awaited major game release Wattam.