Rain Room

In a week that heralded torrential rain, storms, and flooding, it might seem a strange notion to actively search out precipitation in the name of art.

Study of Time 1 2011

Source: Photography by James Harris

Rain Room preview image. Random International 2012

But what if we could control the rain?

Doing away with ‘what ifs’ is the forthcoming Rain Room installation by design group rAndom International, opening in the Barbican’s Curve gallery next week.

The show will see the vast gallery space shrouded in darkness with visitors invited to walk through the space, and unwittingly ‘control the rain’.

Study of Time 1 2011

Source: Photography by James Harris

Rain Room preview image. Random International 2012

Though participants will feel the moisture in the air and hear the sound of water, the ‘rain’ will cleverly avoid them with motion sensors meaning it will only fall elsewhere.

rAndom International says, ‘The installation simulates nature in a seemingly impossible environment. You can wander freely through perpetual rainfall and remain untouched by the drops falling all around you.’

Study of Time 1 2011

Source: © James Harris

Scenography for FAR 2010

The group was founded in 2002 by RCA graduates Stuart Wood, Florian Ortkrass and Hannes Koch, who aim to ‘extend the perspective of contemporary artistic practice’ through their explorations at the fringes of design, architecture, art and science.

Study of Time 1 2011

Source: © rAndom International

Study of Time 1 2011

According the Barbican, the Rain Room piece ‘encourages people to become performers on an unexpected stage’ and acts as ‘a metaphor for the increasing precariousness of our relationship to nature.’ And while all this may be true, the raw appeal of staying dry while it pours around us is artistic enough.

Rain Room runs form 4 October– 28 February 2013 at The Curve, Barbican Art Gallery, Barbican Centre, Silk Street London EC2

Study of Time 1 2011

Source: © rAndom International

Swarm Study III 2011

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