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Travel Report: Rain Room – Yuz Museum, Shanghai.

Inside Rain Room Yuz Museum Shanghai.

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. And that’s where I found it, in a private art gallery and exhibition space housed in an old aircraft hanger. The museum showcased a bunch of stuff, but I had a packed schedule and only wanted to concentrate on Rain Room.

Rain Room Yuz Museum Shanghai.

Rain Room – Yuz Museum, Shanghai.

Rain Room is an interactive art installation by Hannes Koch and Florian Ortkrass. It’s a simple but brilliant idea that gives visitors the chance to walk through a huge downpour without actually getting wet! When I entered the installation that afternoon it was just myself and a couple of Chinese guys. And from the moment I walked in the sound of the beating rain was almost deafening.

Rain Room Yuz Museum Shanghai.

Somehow not getting wet.

Rain Room, Shanghai.

True to its word, this cool installation allowed me to forge a slow and careful path through the downpour without getting soaked. They achieved this with hidden motion sensors that detect human movement. Pretty damn clever.

Visit Rain Room Yuz Museum Shanghai.

An art installation by Random International.

According to its creators, the room is an amplified representation of our environment that simultaneously exposes and protects visitors from the water falling all around. It also explores how human relationships with nature are increasingly mediated through technology. In Rain Room a seemingly intuitive relationship develops between visitors and the artwork, man and machine. Deep.

Yuz Museum, Shanghai.

Yuz Museum Shanghai.

The Yuz Museum of Contemporary Art, Shanghai.

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.

Note: Rain Room’s stay at this museum is now over, but the exhibition continues to travel globally. At the time of writing it is showing in Melbourne, Australia. 

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Like this? Check out more articles from my wanderings around Shanghai.

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For a more detailed and personalized slant, you might want to take a look at my short story series Challenged in China.

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  • Eromonsele Emmanuel

    Thanks for sharing Leighton! I think I’ve come across the ‘rain room’ on Instagram. So wonderful and interactive. Argh! It’ll be nice if rain doesn’t hit you every once in a while.
    P.s. I know it’s illogical but do you think this can be installed in public spaces like restaurants?

    February 28, 2020 - 7:38 am Reply
  • Leighton

    Having Rain Room in public spaces would be pretty crazy! It would no doubt draw in customers, but probably highly unprofitable!

    February 28, 2020 - 11:01 am Reply
  • musictrgrlinnyc

    Just found your blog and I can’t wait to keep reading!

    March 10, 2020 - 5:43 am Reply
    • Leighton

      Thanks a lot for reading and taking the time to comment!

      March 12, 2020 - 3:04 pm Reply
      • musictrgrlinnyc

        You have done some really interesting things. I can’t wait to read more!

        March 15, 2020 - 8:29 am
      • Leighton

        Thanks a lot, plenty more Loch Ness posts coming over the next days…. 🙂

        March 15, 2020 - 8:51 am

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