Artist Transforms Video Game Stills Into Photographic Art

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We at Techland hold firmly that video game designers are some of today’s best artists. But we also realize that mainstream art snobs sometimes dismiss the genre as not real art.

That’s why we love the work of Thibault Brunet, a photographer who’s capturing and retouching screenshots to capture the landscapes and portraits found in today’s top games. His latest works can be found in the Aperture Foundation’s new book, Regeneration 2: Tomorrows Photographers Today. The gallery also features a sampling of Brunet’s works from Grand Theft Auto: Vice City in 2008. The pieces were matted and framed like traditional art photography, challenging preconceived notions of photographic art.

Brunet said walks through virtual universes inspired his work, and that he explored the spaces he believed most players ignored because they weren’t crucial to game play, say the outskirts of player-vs-player maps and industrialized zones.

“These games are inspired by American popular, historical and political culture,” he told TIME Lightbox. “They involve getting through missions–murder, blackmail, theft and escape, enemy liquidation, bombing or even the occupation of territories such as Afghanistan. I chose to explore these games against the natural will of my avatars, the one that the usual player would use. I chose to do it as a photographer.”

To see more of his art, head over to TIME Lightbox.

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