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A small rectangular cardboard box sits upright against a blank background. A flab on the top says ‘Tamagotchi’, and a flap on the front has been opened to reveal a small round opening covered by plastic containing a round, red Tamagotchi device. A small screen on the front of the device shows a small bird-like pet. On the cardboard surrounding the device is a photograph of a bridge at night time surrounded by fireworks, and an array of small cartoon creatures dancing and smiling along the bottom.

From the Collections: Tamagotchi (1997 Hong Kong Collector’s Edition)

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This portable Tamagotchi game (1997 Hong Kong Collector’s Edition) from Bandai Co. is in the M+ Collections, but what is it, who made it, and why did M+ acquire it? William Seung, Curatorial Assistant, Design & Architecture, M+, explains:

What is this?

This is an early generation of a Tamagotchi, a portable pet-raising simulation game. The name is a combination of the Japanese words tamago (‘egg’) and wocchi (‘watch’)—referring to both the gameplay (raising a pet from an egg and keeping watch over it) and its egg-like case and keychain that lets you walk around with it. The goal of the game is to take care of a Tamagotchi, a mysterious alien-like creature, so that it can grow up from a toddler to an adult. Players have to keep it in a good mood, teach it to be well-behaved, and feed it when it’s hungry.

Nine rows of sixteen emojis depicting different images and with different monochromatic colours. Each emoji fits into just twelve by twelve pixels.

Which Old-School Emoji Are You?

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Did you know that emojis are twenty years old? And that the original design sketches of the first ever emojis are in the M+ Collections? Fitting within a tiny 12x12 pixel frame, they were developed in 1999 by Japanese telecommunication company NTT DOCOMO INC alongside its launch of i-mode, the world’s first mobile telephone internet service.

The graphic designs of the first 176 emojis were created by Kurita Shigetaka and architect Aoki Jun, with a second batch of seventy-six released in 2002. Kurita came up with the visual system of emojis to help convey information on the small phone screens.

So, this leads to one important question: which of these original emojis best fits your personality? Take the quiz below to find out.

All emoji images ©NTT DOCOMO, INC.

Oil painting on canvas of a panda sitting on an elegant lawn chair in the middle of a large green meadow. The panda is sitting in front of a small lawn table with a bottle and two plates of food on it.

From the Collections: ‘Untitled’ by Wang Xingwei

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Untitled (2003) by Wang Xingwei is in the M+ Collections, but what is it, who made it, and why did M+ acquire it? Isabella Tam, Associate Curator, Visual Art, M+, explains:

What is this?

Untitled is a painting by Chinese artist Wang Xingwei. It depicts a panda sitting on a lavish chair in a green meadow, having a leisurely moment with wine and other delicacies. While the gradation of green and white in the background evokes a sense of afternoon light, there are no other visible clues to further contextualise the scene.

A man stands at the front of a cinema underneath a screen with a turntable in front of him. The screen is showing a moving image work, depicting a surreally stretched-out Hong Kong street. Numerous people sit on the cinema chairs in front of the man and the screen.

Experimenting with Live Cinema through the M+ Collections

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What is live cinema? Unlike a traditional film screening, live cinema is a performance in which artists experiment and improvise with the moving images on display. M+ recently held the museum’s first ever live cinema event, Haunting Images: Live Cinema by Lim Giong, inviting Taiwanese composer and musician Lim Giong to create live sonic and musical scoring to the images on screen. Lim started working in the late '80s and early '90s as a boundary-pushing electronic musician, and over the decades, he has developed his practice to include film scoring, thinking about moving images in a very particular way.

For Haunting Images, he put together a programme of moving image works including three works selected from the M+ Collections. Below, we show how Lim scored these works, and why.

1. Static No. 23 (Revolve) (2017) by Daniel Crooks