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Gallery 1988: "Multiplayer x2″ Classic Video Game Art

For our five year anniversary, my boyfriend knew just how to please:  he took me to the opening night of a video game art show at Gallery 1988.

The display will run in Los Angeles February 10 – March 3 (Wed – Sun: 11am – 6pm).  Artwork is available for purchase online if you don’t live nearby. Prices range from $10 to $400.

Although there were over 30 pieces of my own 8-bit adventures decking the walls, my eyes caught the holy grail of childhood gaming… the game I never – NEVER – completed:

Mat Pringle “Ghosts and Goblins – ‘Die A Thousand Times In Your Underwear'” Print — $35. (inspired by Ghosts’nGoblins)

I apologize if Ghosts’n Goblins is a bit obscure for some of you, but I LOL’D… and I’m not talking about the half-ass “lol” you write in a text message.  I’m talking about the real kind.  The out-loud kind.  It was involuntary; as if my soul was screaming out suddenly in the form of laughter.  This game was torturous!  Playing it was like that scene in the “Princess Bride” when Count Rugen experiments on Wesley: “I’ve just sucked one year of your life away. I might one day go as high as five, but I really don’t know what that would do to you.”

For those that don’t know the pain of Ghosts’n Goblins (1986 NES), it’s still considered one of the most difficult video games of all time.  Seriously.  Download it on your Wii just for “fun”.  Our hero, Arthur, is allowed only two hits before his ever-awaiting death: one removes his armor revealing his boxer shorts, two turns him into a pile of bones.

I don’t believe anyone has ever beaten this game.  Ever.  And if you have, you’re a dirty liar.

We bought print 1/50.  Thank you to the artist, Mat Pringle, for something I thought no one else understood.

Gallery 1988 is one of the world’s most talked about pop-culture venues, owned by California natives Katie Cromwell and Jensen Karp.  The pair met in college.  “1988” signifies their Cali roots, as it was the year both the Dodgers and the Lakers won championships, but also played on their love of 80’s themes that evoke mutual childhood nostalgia.  Turns out Jensen Karp has also written for Hello Giggles and the guy’s got a great sense of humor.  Check him out.

A film crew was capturing footage at the jam-packed opening, and I was approached by producer Joseph Adams with director Greg Borkman for an interview.  A longer documentary about Gallery 1988 will be released by the end of 2012, but for now, here’s a short promo for the exhibit:


These were a few of my favorite pieces of art on display.  Be sure to check out the full selection online.  Which are your favorites?  If you order one let me know!

Nate Duval “Obey Wario, Destroy Wario” Print — $60.  Black/White Version Print — $40.  (inspired by Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins & Andre the Giant Has a Posse street art campaign by Shepard Fairey)

Doe Eyed Design “Heros & Villains HD” Print — $35.  (inspired by various classic video games)

Ibraheem Youssef “OG” Print — $30.  (inspired by Nintendo)

Jayson Weidel “Castlevania” Print — $30.  (inspired by Castlevania)

Alan Hynes “Life Wasted” Print — $30.  (inspired by Super Mario Bros.)

James Flames “It’s Dangerous To Go Alone. Take This.” Print — $30.  (inspired by The Legend Of Zelda)

Jason Liwag “Alpha-Bit” Print — $35.  (inspired by various classic video games)


El Jefe Design “Day Fades On Zebes – Ripley Edition” Print — $35.  Blue/Purple Variation $35.  (inspired by Metroid)

Ben Chlapek “Extra Lives” Print — $35. (inspired by Contra)

Matt Owen “In N Out” Online Exclusive Print — $30.  (inspired by Pac-Man)

Olly Moss “Super Mario” Print — $70.  (inspired by Super Mario Bros.)

Sean Clarity “Excite” Print — $10.  (inspired by Excitebike)

Fernando Reza “Loose Lips” Print — $50.  (inspired by Super Mario Bros.)


Featured Image via: Gallery 1988

All Additional Images via: Gallery 1988