Hello
My Game Is

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Critical Review

Invader’s Hello my Game Is perfectly captures the artist’s 8-bit visual language and his engagement with retro, often childish imagery.

This series of prints, whose production spanned from 2007 to 2017, and whose name is a pun playing on the 'Hello My Name is…' tags, encompasses a variety of different subjects, all sharing in their quotation of the 8-bit visual register of arcade games and in the pixelated texture that has become Invader’s signature.

Some of the prints pertaining to the collection were self-published by Invader in collaboration with London publisher and printer POW (Pictures on Walls), a company dedicated to producing and printing Street Art in the form of original print editions. Working with POW, Invader used a special relief printing technology, which allowed him to bring out the image’s mosaic-like structure along with each pixel separately.

The more recent prints, especially the ones produced in 2017, were instead published in conjunction with Invader’s solo eponymous exhibition at the Musée en Herbe in Paris, Hello My Game Is …, which opened in January 2017 and ran for six months in the Parisian gallery.

The show, and concomitantly the prints, were envisioned by Invader as a means of engaging children into his universe, per the aims of the Musée en Herbe in Paris, whose self-declared mission lies in organising exhibitions imagined as shared familial activities capable of involving children and their families.

Why is the Hello My Game Is collection important?

For the exhibition, Invader designed numerous interactive installations, starting with a room presenting a timeline of arcade video games such as PONG (Atari 1972), BREAKOUT (Atari 1976), GALAXIAN (Namco, 1979), PAC-MAN (Namco, 1980) and TETRIS (Atari, 1984) with which children could play. This first room could be understood as a visual digital archive, which in turn offered to the viewer a glimpse into the repertoire of images from which Invader draws most of his inspiration. Indeed, all of Invader’s art revolves around the world of the early 1980s and children’s games, which locates his artistic stance within a nostalgic time-travel that revives or preserves interest in our cultural technological heritage. Following the arcade room, the exhibition continued with a multi-media room where children could interactively explore the so-called Invasion Maps, which offered a visual overview of Invader’s multiple invasions, and with a room dedicated to Rubikcubism, one of Invader’s most provoking yet witty projects (see ‘Rubikcubism’ series). Finally, the showed ended with a number of paper works executed on squared paper, perfect for recreating the pixelated quality and texture of Invader's art - one of the most appreciated drawings being Repetition, Variation, Evolution, which was then reproduced as a print and is now offered here on sale.

Regarding the exhibition, Invader claimed: “I know that children are generally appreciative of my work. Maybe because I have myself often drawn inspiration from the world of childhood. Besides, who other than an adult with a child’s soul could devote his life to invading the world with video game characters?”, and it is in this spirit that this series of prints can hope to amuse and entertain children and adults alike.

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