Digital art and entertainment museum closes due to COVID-19

The Oakland-based museum will move its collection of more than 40,000 objects to a warehouse and hopes to reopen in two years

The Museum of Art and Digital Entertainment, based in Oakland, Calif., is set to close its doors, with uncertainty about whether it will ever reopen.

Founder and director Alex Handy said in an interview with GamesBeat that the group managing the museum could not reach an agreement on the rent of the place during the COVID-19 crisis.

MADE is run by a non-profit organization and located on Broadway Street. 80% of its budget comes from admissions, its website says, and because it has been closed since March due to the pandemic, it is now forced to close and move its collections to storage.

Storage will be paid for through donations — they are always open on this page and will also go towards the possible search for a new space for the museum.

“The current plan is to remain in storage for two years while we raise the funds and plan to create the video game museum of our dreams,” the museum’s website says. “When we’re ready we’ll be back and better than ever, mark our words.”

MADE featured a collection of over 40,000 items of video game history (including 11,000 playable games), but also offered free courses to learn how to make games and held regular game jams and tournaments. It opened in 2010.

The games industry has been affected to varying degrees by the COVID-19 crisis. In April, we looked at the state of the games industry during the global pandemic, from esports and events to development and retail.

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