Smithsonian adds Flower and Halo 2600 to collection

Following a successful exhibition of the Art of Video Games, the Smithsonian American Art Museum has acquired two of its showpieces. Both Flower and the fan de-make Halo 2600 are now part of the museum's collection.

"The best video games are a great expression of art and culture in our democracy," said Elizabeth Broun, director of the Smithsonian American Art Museum, in the announcement. "I am excited that this new medium is now a permanent part of our collections alongside other forms of video, electronic and code-based art."

Curator Michael Mansfield said that those two represent "just the beginning of our work in this area." Further, he notes that by starting to include video games, the Smithsonian can now "investigate both the material science of video game components and develop best practices for the digital preservation of the source code for the games themselves."

The Art of Video Games exhibit is still on a 10-city tour. Video interviews with various subjects of the museum, including Flower creator Jenova Chen and Halo 2600 creator Ed Fries, are available to view at the Smithsonian's YouTube page.