News: Japan’s teamLab melds museum and sauna in fresh digital art experience.
TOKYO (Reuters) – A wall of flower petals shatters into a thousand fragments. A huge ball floats in the air and changes from red to blue to purple. Hundreds of butterflies shoot around a screen made of tiny water particles.
This is not a modern art museum, but the latest creation from the Japanese TeamLab collective of engineers, artists and architects, anchored in a maze of seven saunas illuminated in shades of red, green and yellow.
The Tokyo-based Digital Art Group took over an empty property in the dazzling Roppongi district and last year erected a gigantic tent that housed the sauna rooms and three impressive art installations.
“Art is traditionally exhibited in luxurious locations like palaces or museums – we wanted to create a luxurious state of mind for people to experience,” said Takashi Kudo, a TeamLab laboratory member, at a demonstration on Saturday.
“TikTok teamLab Reconnect” will open from March 22nd to the end of August. For $ 44 on weekdays and $ 53 on weekends, visitors can get in and out of the hot rooms and cold showers, and enter the works of art wearing only swimsuits.
The coronavirus means that the number of seats in the largest saunas has been reduced from 24 to 12 and the ventilation has been adjusted to meet state standards for air circulation.
Kudo stood under dozens of large, hand-blown glass lamps from Italy. The lamps slowly changed color from burnt orange to magenta, illuminating dark corridors that separated the rooms.
The team said it aims to affect all of the senses, including touch, sound, and smell. Aromas like roasted green tea waft through one of the saunas and white birch in another.
“Nobody goes to an art museum that way because art is art and sauna is sauna,” said Kudo, pointing to his swimming trunks. “We wanted to try to combine and offer a completely different experience – and a completely different experience of this art.”
Reporting by Antoni Slodkowski, Irene Wang and Kim Kyung-Hoon. Adaptation by Gerry Doyle
Original Source © Reuters