King Ludd’s Midway Arcade, 2009
King Ludd’s Midway Arcade, 2009 [Curator]
9 artist-made, family-friendly, analog arcade and carnival games, from air-hockey to lawn bowling, pinball to video games.
The Midway Plaissance in Hyde Park was the site of the World’s Fair of 1893, an international celebration of the landing of Columbus in North America 401 years prior. Chicago intended to out-Eiffel the French to prove that it was the cultural center of the universe. The fair was a massively ambitious feat of engineering, architectural prowess and speed, exhibiting buildings, people, food, skills, and inventions from all over the world, each country attempting to one-up its neighbor. The fair was brimming with the promise of technology, and the hope of future America.
King Ludd was the alias pen-name of the Luddite movement, a 19th century revolt of English textile artisans against the introduction of automated weaving technology and the abolition of set pricing in favor of free-market, supply-and-demand pricing.
As Chicago vies for the Olympics, as we consider the benefits and failures of free-market capitalism in a time of recession, as we consider who deserves to be bailed out and who should face the fiddler, as we succumb to the promise of hi-tech solutions to environmental and social ills, somewhere south of the Midway,
Artist Games by: Hideous Beast, Forward Information Office, Jim Duignan, Ted Danlyuk, Material Exchange, Monica Herrera, Conrad Freiburg, Shane Mecklenburger, and Mark L Franz. Tarot readings by Madame Rachel Herman. Performances by Chico the Ex-Clown.