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2022: Special Issue: Ludomaterialities

Papercrafting Utopia: Gaming Literacies from Bauhaus to Nintendo Labo

November 15, 2022


What does the Bauhaus have to do with Nintendo Labo and the Maker Movement? The text represents a media-pedagogical investigation. It explores the question of the extent to which material studies at the Bauhaus - especially in the preliminary course, the “Vorkurs” - were understood as a field of experimentation in order to test and further develop reform pedagogical approaches. Certain ideals and values are inscribed in this process, which we can still identify today not only in so-called pioneering communities such as the Maker Movement, but which are also a central component of an educational game such as Nintendo Labo in which we are supposed to use cardboard kits to assemble the components of the Nintendo game console in a new way. These considerations are followed by ideas about play and game literacy, which is outlined here in general terms. Three aspects come to the foreground: (1) a rejection of traditional pedagogical approaches; (2) a fundamental re-evaluation of the possibilities and a radical simplification of the artistic material; and (3) an experimental, playful approach that has an explicitly constructive character.