The weather has been a hot topic in design lately. More recently, we have seen Berlin-based design agency Art+Com create a kinetic rain sculpture for the departure lounge of Terminal 1 at Changi Airport in Singapore, and creative studio Troika install an interactive light installation in Hoxton Square in East London, humoring the British obsession with checking the weather forecast. Now, opened only yesterday, experimental art studio rAndom International has created a commission for the Barbican, London called rain Room, which invites visitors to control and experience rainfall without getting wet.
Set to a musical score courtesy of German composer, Max Richter, visitors can bravely wander through a 100 square meter field of “torrential rain”, or observe the downpour from the side of the installation. Although moisture surrounds visitors (they can hear and see falling water), Rain Room is controlled by motion sensors, keeping those within the installation dry.
“As visitors step up on to the stage, these identical vertical lines of driving rain begin to be repelled, as if each body is giving off a kind of invisible magnetic field. As you step further in, the rain closes around you, enveloping each silhouetted figure in a perfect cylindrical void. It is a startlingly surreal experience,” adds architecture and design critic at The Guardian newspaper, Oliver Wainwright.
You can see more of rAndom International’s work in our recent feature Digital Crystal: Swarovski at the Design Museum – an exhibition that explores the meaning of memory in the digital age.
Rain Room will run at the Barbican in London until March 3, 2013.
Scroll down for images via Designboom.