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The Rain Room by Random International

This is worth traveling to London for. Art studio Random International have created something extraordinary at London’s Barbican Curve Gallery. You are asked to walk into 100 square meters of heavy rain, a downpour, in fact. The water is real but you don’t get wet.

Rain Room by rAndom International

As you walk the rain avoids you. It just stops raining  just above your head. As you walk on it starts again, just where you were. The sensation is incredible. At once you get a sense of being in control of the rain and, at the same time, isolation – surrounded by water, but dry. You can feel the moisture in the air, you can smell it and your ears are filled with the sound of it.

As you progress through The Curve, the sound of water and a suggestion of moisture fill the air, before you are confronted by this carefully choreographed downpour that responds to your movements and presence.

Rain Room at the Barbican from rAndom International on Vimeo.

As someone with mixed faith in technology there is also a certain excitement. What if it all goes wrong?  And there is a lot of clever technology to go wrong. The instillation is controlled by a series of cameras that map the  bodies walking through the exhibit, They  translate this to a pixelated grid of 25cm x 25cm panels, each of which controls the nine water outlets. There is a total of 2,500 litres of water, falling at a rate of 1,000 litres per minute, which is filtered, treated and used again. All of this in a city where waterproof skin is a distinct advantage.

This is a post which requires credits. The photo is by Oli Scarff/Getty Images, the Video is by Gramafilm with music by Max Richter, Rain Room is supported by the Maxine and Stuart Frankel Foundation for Art and it was brought to our attention by the very wonderful Atticus and Finch who surly deserves a few votes on the Modenus top design blogs just for this, no?

  • http://twitter.com/Alexandrafunfit Alexandra Williams

    Wow, that is super cool. I’d want to walk in there for a long time, with my iPod on, just to test it. What a blast.

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