Trevor Smith on Angela Washko: Transcript

What I find fascinating about Angela Washko’s work is that she didn’t set out to make art about video games, but recognized that it was possible to produce her projects within the game itself.

One of the special features of World of Warcraft is that it encourages social and conversational interaction. For example, within its open landscape there are towns where players might gather to socialize rather than engage in combat.

Washko used this forum to conduct absurdist performances and engage other players in discussions of gender, sexism, and harassment.

Her work inside of World of Warcraft began in 2012, a couple of years before Gamergate made us all aware of the vicious harassment and threats to which women and gender non-conforming gamers were commonly subjected.

Washko’s point was not to critique the game itself, but rather to get inside and facilitate a dialogue about the rules by which we are all agreeing to play.

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