C L A S S I C    G A M I N G    M E E T S    M O D E R N    A R T

Click on one of the four cities where you want to dance and play!!!


Broadway Boogie Woogie

Music by Boogie Woogie Trio

Detroit Techno

Music by Anonym

Toronto Techno

Music by Jeff Milligan

Tokyo Techno

Music by Mitsuaki Komamura

Pac-Mondrian closes the perceptual distance between fine art and video games by combining Piet Mondrian's Modernist masterpiece 'Broadway Boogie Woogie' with Toru Iwatani's classic video game Pac-Man. The three new Ms. Pac-Mondrian levels return the painting to the dance clubs that inspired it with music by contemporary techno musicians mapping the birth of electronic music in their home towns.

When Piet Mondrian arrived in New York in 1940, he heard the Boogie Woogie piano of Meade Lux Lewis, Albert Ammons, and Pete Johnson, and from then on refused to dance to any other jazz, leaving the floor in a huff if the music didn't boogie.

After years of completely abstract work he abandoned the black grid to use yellow lines and red, blue, and grey colour blocks to build a representation of New York infused with all the vibrant kinetic energy of raucous road-house piano blues in 'Broadway Boogie Woogie'.

Pac-Mondrian transcodes 'Broadway Boogie Woogie' into a Pac-Man video game: the painting becomes the board, the music becomes the sound effects, and Piet Mondrian becomes Pac-Man.

Pac-Mondrian disciplines the syncopated rhythms of Mondrian's spatial arrangements into a regular grid, then frees the gaze to follow the viewer's whimsical perambulations of the painting: a player's thorough study of the painting clears the level.

Each play of the game is an act of devotion. Mondrian's geometric spirituality fuses with his ecstatic physicality when Pac-Mondrian dances around the screen while the Trinity of Boogie Woogie jazz play 'Boogie Woogie Prayer'.

Each play of the game is an improvisational jazz session. Pac-Mondrian sits in as a session drummer with Ammons, Lewis, and Johnson, hitting hi-hats, cymbals, and snares as he eats pellets.

THE   ORIGINALS

Pac-Mondrian was adapted from source code found at Benny Chow's home page.

Play the original Namco Pac-Man games. View Pac-Man screen shot.

See the original 'Broadway Boogie Woogie' at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

Listen to the original boogie woogie music of Albert Ammons, Meade Lux Lewis, and Pete Johnson.

Listen to the original techno music of Jeff Milligan, and Anonym.

<- clubhouse