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March 2019. “Have you heard about Rain Room?” my colleague Lena asked me back in Ruian a few days before my Shanghai trip. Hmm, I had not heard of Rain Room, “What’s the deal?” When she explained the concept to me I found myself so fascinated I made sure to pencil in a visit to the city’s Yuz Museum, a private art gallery and exhibition space housed in an old aircraft hanger. The museum had a bunch of stuff on show but I had a packed schedule and was only interested in Rain Room. So off I went to dip inside and have my curiosity satisfied.
March 2019. Rain Room is an interactive art installation created by Hannes Koch and Florian Ortkrass. It’s a simple but brilliant idea that allows visitors to walk through a huge downpour without actually getting wet! When I entered Rain Room that afternoon it was just myself and a couple of Chinese guys and the sound of the beating rain was almost deafening.
March 2019. True to its word Rain Room allowed me to forge a slow and careful path through the downpour without getting wet. This is achieved thanks to hidden motion sensors that detect human movement. Pretty damn clever.
March 2019. According to its creators, Rain Room is an amplified representation of our environment where visitors are simultaneously exposed to and protected from the water falling all around. It also explores how human relationships to each other and to nature are increasingly mediated through technology. In Rain Room a seemingly intuitive relationship develops between visitor and artwork, man and machine. Deep.
March 2019. Rain Room is located in Shanghai’s Yuz Museum of Contemporary Art. It’s a little bit out of the way in all honesty so best accessed via the subway’s Yun Jin Road Station on Line 11. Take Exit 7 and load up the 15-minute walk with Google Maps. Entrance to the museum is free, while tickets for Rain Room go for 60CNY (£6.80/€8/$9).
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