National Videogame Museum chosen for Jingle Jam 2020

We are proud and excited to announce that the National Videogame Museum’s education programme has been chosen as one of the charities that Jingle Jam will support in 2020.

Spanning the two weeks from 1-14 December, this year’s Jingle Jam charity gaming event will see streamers across the globe raise funds for 12 non-profit causes via The Jingle Jam 2020 Games Bundle and other activities.

More details will be announced soon about the 40+ games, in-game items and other events that will be available.

The charity is so grateful for this support and send a massive thank you to the team at Yogscast, Honest PR and all of the games companies that are getting involved.

We intend to focus any funds raised on our award-winning educational programmes, especially on those focused on helping disadvantaged children left behind during the pandemic to catch up with their studies.

Find out more about our educational programme here and Jingle Jam here.

 

National Videogame Museum closes to observe the second national lockdown

The NVM has closed to observe the second national lockdown starting November 3rd and currently ending 2nd December.

This sad news followed a very successful half term, where the NVM sold 86% of all tickets and welcomed over 700 visitors. We had some lovely feedback from people wanting to let us know not just how good a time they had but how safe they felt in our venue.

 

 

 

 

The NVM’s safety procedures were developed through consultation with our visitors and staff and have been working so well.

While our audience cannot visit in person, our team is gearing up to restart our award winning online programme which offers more ways to play and learn at home, so watch this space for more news on our new lockdown activities.

https://thenvm.org/learning/learn-at-home/

https://thenvm.org/learning/pixelheads/

https://www.youtube.com/thenationalvideogamemuseum

 

BREAKING – National Videogame Museum wins Kids in Museums award

We’ve just heard that the National Videogame Museum has won an award for Best Website activity in the Family Friendly Museums Award 2020, run by the charity, Kids in Museums. The BGI is so proud of our Learning Officer, Leah Dungay and our Marcomms Officer, Conor Clarke, for launching our NVM at Home activities within days of lockdown in March. The activities, which show families how to use free online development tools to make games art, design and narrative content, have been enjoyed by thousands of children, with very high engagement and completion rates. We’ve had a lot of happy parents sharing their children’s work, which are a great first step towards learning the STEAM skills we all need to thrive in the modern world. You can still play the activites on our YouTube channel as well as download materials to use at home. Here’s the first one ever broadcast:

We’ve always known our programmes can inspire young people whatever their background to do amazing things. It’s lovely to have that validated by the museum sector. Read some case studies of how we’ve helped children from the most disadvantaged areas.

 

BGI appoints a Director of Visitor Experience

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sheffield 13/10/2020:  The charity has announced the appointment of Hannah Bryan to lead the Visitor Experience team at the National Videogame Museum.

Hannah joins the resurgent museum to lead a new team focused on enhancing value for the charity’s 35,000-strong visitor community.

Formerly the Head of Audience Development and Programming at The Auckland Project, Hannah focused on increasing footfall, developing income streams and running marketing campaigns across multiple sites.

The new Director role leads a team of 16 staff and crew to enhance visitor experiences at the Museum, support the charity’s strategic development and develop data-driven approaches to operating the Museum.

You can meet all the BGI’s team here.

Note to Editors
A press pack including images and video of the NVM is available here.

If you would like to arrange an interview, please contact Conor using conor@thenvm.org.

About the National Videogame Museum
The NVM is governed by the BGI, a registered charity number 1183530, that educates the public about the art, science, history and technology of videogames. For more details about the NVM, please visit: http://www.thenvm.org

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National Videogame Museum wins lifesaving grant from Culture Recovery Fund

Grant helps the UK’s only museum dedicated to videogames to outlast next phase of pandemic

Sheffield 12/10/2020:  The BGI charity has won critical support from the Arts Council of England’s Culture Recovery Fund. The grant will ensure the National Videogame Museum can keep operating through these unprecedented times until the Spring.

The fund was created by the Arts Council of England following the Government’s pivotal decision to provide £1.57 billion towards the arts and cultural sectors. The National Videogame Museum sits alongside a wide range of arts venues, theatres, museums and cultural organisations which have received over £250m in funding.

Ian Livingstone CBE, Chair of the BGI, said: “We were delighted to hear this news and would like to express our sincere gratitude to Arts Council, DCMS and the Culture Secretary for supporting the cultural sector during its hour of need. The generous funding for the nation’s cultural organisations including the UK’s only museum dedicated to videogames is very much appreciated. It was a great relief to learn that our educational and cultural programmes will be able to continue in Sheffield for the foreseeable future. Our mission is to preserve, celebrate and promote videogames culture for years to come in this exceptional and unique museum”.

Rick Gibson, CEO of the BGI, said: “This is a huge moment for our young charity. We’ve fought hard to keep going and have been astonished by the generosity of our community and the games industry in our darkest hours at the start of the first lockdown. As the second lockdown looms, our backs were against the wall so I want to thank the Arts Council and DCMS for this timely intervention. But most importantly I want to recognise our staff whose commitment, expertise and passion for our important art form has been recognised as culturally important on a national scale.”

Continue reading “National Videogame Museum wins lifesaving grant from Culture Recovery Fund”

The National Videogame Museum wins Art Fund award to create the online National Videogame Gallery

The National Videogame Museum has received an Art Fund ‘Respond and Reimagine’ grant to launch The National Videogame Gallery, an online platform that will explore the visual arts in videogames.

Drawing on fine art practice both traditional and digital, the project will look at game art in new ways, illuminating its role in game development as more than simply a graphical asset. Conceptual artwork, character design and studies, illustration and of course animation – the visual arts within videogames encompasses a wide range of form and skills. 

Each exhibition in the new National Videogame Gallery will explore the process of a different type of artwork, creating a diverse collection that will cover a range of artistic processes. The project will also document the approaches and biographies of a diverse group of artists themselves. Who they are and how their work is created will be explored with full interviews, and newly commissioned writing from high profile players and critics. Over the next 12 months, these exhibitions will be hosted on the National Videogame Museum’s website: thenvm.org.

Art Fund’s Respond and Reimagine grants offer flexible and responsive funding designed to meet immediate challenges connected to the Covid-19 crisis and reimagine future ways of working. In the first round, 18 grants were given, from a total of 114 applications. Developed in consultation with museums and galleries, the grants meet needs in four priority areas of collections, audiences, digital, and workforce. 

Since lockdown in March 2020, the NVM launched a fundraising campaign to keep its Sheffield venue alive. Its lockdown activities have been well received, and its livestreamed training and web activities were shortlisted for the Kids in Museum’s Family Friendly Museum Award from Home. The NVM recently reopened to the public with very reduced capacity, and can now be visited with limited availability every Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Continue reading “The National Videogame Museum wins Art Fund award to create the online National Videogame Gallery”

The Games Education Summit delivers again

GamesEd 20 ran last week as a virtual conference with 40 speakers covering a wide range of games education topics including the impact of Covid and Brexit. Industry leaders from Unity, Epic Games, Creative Assembly, Sumo Digital, Codemasters, Aardvark Swift and Playground Games joined courses leaders, Deans and Heads of School from Norwich University of the Arts, and Sheffield Hallam, Staffordshire, Bournemouth and Portsmouth Universities, amongst many others. Third sector trailblazers such as Ukie, Digital SchoolHouse, TIGA, Into Games, G into Gaming and Gayming Magazine were convened by the BGI for another exciting  conference, this time joined by a diverse group of students and interns who shared their experiences of their journeys towards games careers.

You can read coverage on the Summit on GamesIndustry.biz.

A Discord channel has been set up to maintain the conversation between this Covid-delayed Summit in September and the next Summit in the Spring of 2021. The channel is now open to anyone interested in the subject.

The sessions were recorded and are now available to watch for those unable to attend:

You can watch all the sessions on the BGI’s YouTube channel.

 

The National Videogame Museum to Reopen to Visitors

Saturday August 22nd will be the first day it’s been open since March 15th

Sheffield 19/08/2020: The National Videogame Museum (NVM) has announced that it will be reopening to the public on Saturday 22nd August, after adapting its gallery space and having staged a trial opening with an invited audience. The museum had previously closed on the 16th March 2020, ahead of the UK lockdown, to keep its visitors and community safe.

The Museum has developed many new safety procedures to keep the museum as safe as possible for visitors to explore and enjoy. This includes an increased cleaning regime, redesigned galleries to create safe social distancing, and a clear hand sanitising guide to enable visitors to fully enjoy the museum’s exhibits. A full breakdown of the new safety procedures that have been put in place can be found on their website.

Iain Simons, Director of Culture for the NVM, said “We’re tentatively excited to be welcoming our visitors back to this new NVM experience, which is possible thanks to the dedication and imagination of our amazing team. Our community of patrons and friends have kept us going through lockdown with extraordinary levels of support. Like everyone else, we’re only just discovering what post-lockdown operation will be, so whilst we’re nervously excited – we’re also delighted to be welcoming people back to the NVM.”

Rick Gibson, CEO of the BGI, also, said “This has been an extraordinarily difficult time for our new charity. We have been buoyed by the support from the public and games companies but we are a long way from out of the woods. We really don’t know how our community will react or whether they will return. We are delighted to be able to reopen in this limited way to understand how we can operate in this radically different environment.

Since lockdown, the NVM also delivered a popular  online programme, that saw its learning activities made freely available for those at home. These accessible outreach activities made their programmes available to more people than ever, and are shortlisted for the Kids in Museum’s Family Friendly Museum Award from Home. The NVM recently relaunched an online Saturday club, Pixelheads, that is running throughout the Summer Holidays.

Notes to Editors

A press pack including images and video of the NVM is available here.

If you would like to arrange an interview with the team, please contact Conor using conor@thenvm.org.

The National Videogame Museum wins award to collect lockdown histories in new project, “The Animal Crossing Diaries”

The National Videogame Museum (NVM) has been awarded a grant from the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation and Museum Association to collect histories of those who have been playing and living with Nintendo’s hit videogame ‘Animal Crossing: New Horizons’ during the lockdown period.

This new collection will focus on the cultural phenomenon that followed the release of Animal Crossing: New Horizons for the Nintendo Switch in March 2020, just as the world was transformed by the pandemic. This videogame rapidly became an international sensation in which millions of players have been creating and managing their own tropical island along with a cast of talkative animal neighbours. The game became an important social and creative outlet for people unable to socialise in person during lockdown. 

This innovative online exhibition  will open up new ways of collecting, archiving and collecting videogame histories, and record for the first time a highly meaningful but ephemeral and intangible experience through the perspective of its players. 

Iain Simons, Director of Culture for the NVM, said “Animal Crossing is the perfect experience for a lockdown. The coincidental timing of its release provided a welcome relief for millions of people who wanted to go outdoors but couldn’t, who wanted to meet friends but weren’t allowed. It’s no surprise that this incredibly creative, social space became a safe haven for millions during this turbulent year. ”

“With the fantastic support of Esmee Fairbairn, we want to explore the different ways in which videogames touch our audience’s lives.”

Since lockdown in March 2020, the NVM launched a fundraising campaign to keep its Sheffield venue alive. Its lockdown activities have been well received, and its livestreamed training and web activities were shortlisted for the Kids in Museum’s Family Friendly Museum Award from Home. The NVM recently announced that it was relaunching its online Saturday club, Pixelheads, that is running throughout the Summer Holidays.

GamesEd20 Returns September 8th as Virtual Summit

Sheffield, 05/08/2020: GamesEd20, the ground-breaking conference returns on September 8th with a virtual format to tackle games education and recruitment during Covid and Brexit.

Influential games course leaders from further and higher education, leaders from prominent studios and technology companies, recruiters, 3rd sector organisations and students will start an emergency debate about how the games industry and games educators are tackling the significant threats, changes and opportunities of Covid-19 and Brexit.

You can sign up for discounted price tickets here.

The Games Education Summit 20 is produced by the BGI, with a platinum sponsorship from Unity Technologies, and will be held online using Zoom and Discord on 8th September 2020.

Innovative educators, studios and 3rd sector organisations will share how they are handling the pandemic, and will discuss from many angles how Covid-19 and Brexit could impact deep-rooted challenges with employability, diversity, skills, apprenticeships and work placements within the industry.

Keynotes will be delivered by Aurore Dimopoulos, Head of Learn Content Production at Unity Technologies Emma Smith from Creative Assembly and Mike Gamble from Epic Games. 

The Summit will spotlight students themselves, hearing from current and past students about how they bridged the gap between study and work.

Unity is the Platinum Sponsor of the Summit, which is also sponsored by Unreal Engine, Aardvark Swift, and AIM Awards. The Summit’s media partner is Gamesindustry.biz. Reduced price tickets at £30 can be purchased at http://thebgi.uk/gamesed20/.

The Summit will feature talks and panels by over 30 speakers from Staffordshire University, Aardvark Swift, Portsmouth University, Sumo Digital, Bournemouth University, Digital Schoolhouse, GameDragons, Birmingham City University, Ukie, Codemasters, the BGI, Leeds Trinity College, AIM, Rockstar, Rare, Priestley College, TT Games, NextGen Skills Academy, London College of Communications, Women in Games, Playground Games, TIGA and Falmouth University.

Rick Gibson, CEO of the BGI, said: “Last year, the Summit brought together studios and educators for the first time to discuss some challenging subjects like diversity, internships, lack of industry engagement with education and quality of graduates in some cracking debates. Covid forced us to move and then redesign this year’s Summit, to focus on the key challenges of Covid and Brexit and the strategies innovative studios and institutions are employing”.

“With Unity’s roots in the gaming industry, it’s important for us to have a strong presence at events that bridge the gap between the gaming industry and education,” said Aurore Dimopoulos, Head of Learn Content Production at Unity Technologies. “Being the technology partner in the conversations between these two sectors is critical, given Unity’s ability to equip learners with the development tools necessary to advance their careers.”

Find more information on GamesEd20 here.