Rain Room is a large-scale environment of perpetually falling water that ceases to pour wherever a person walks. Conceived by the artists Random International, the Rain Room responds to the presence and behaviour of its participants, offering visitors a surreal environment and a unique relationship with water.
Now an edition of the Rain Room by the design collective is to go on permanent display in Sharjah, in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). A 3,300 sq. ft building for the installation is currently under construction and is expected to open in the autumn of 2017. “Rain Room provokes a sense of surprise and wonder in audiences, and that reaction will perhaps be stronger in Sharjah… as the UAE has a predominantly desert landscape,” stated Sheikha Hoor Al Qasimi, the president of the Sharjah Art Foundation, which acquired the piece in cooperation with Galerie Brigitte Schenk.
Founded in 2005, Random International is a collaborative studio for experimental practice within contemporary art. Taking science as a means to develop a new material vocabulary, their work invites consideration through explorations of behaviour and natural phenomena — with the viewer an active participant. In the decade following the studio’s inception, the focus of Random’s artistic practice has continuously evolved and today encompasses sculpture, performance and spatial installation on an architectural scale.
“The work is an immersive experience, balancing aspects of control, as an effective signifier of our relationship with nature. In effecting the fall of rain we seem to possess a God-like control of ‘nature’ – albeit in simulation – but it is the installation that actually controls our movements. The work offers the viewer a physical hyperreality – with the addition of the installation’s physical poetry, the viewer is lost in a child-like wonder” – Paul Black, Managing Editor.
Photo: P A Black © Artlyst 2015.