Just imagine walking into a rain room after a hot, sultry day but with a little twist: you do not get wet. This phenomenal and unreal experience by Sharjah Art Foundation lets visitors enjoy rain like a downpour, but leaves you miraculously dry. This is made possible with motion sensors that stops the rain wherever you are. The arrangement is quite unique, because you are closely surrounded by falling water without a drop actually touching you.
Rain Room is an installation made my Random International, a studio set up by two Royal College of Arts graduates in 2005 that specialises in experimental practice within contemporary art. The Rain Room is like a dark underground chamber, lit only by a beam of light that makes the water dazzle while it breaks through black spaces around, thus providing a very mesmerizing experience.
If you think about it from another, more subtle perspective, it evokes a sense of another world on another planet where rain is the only thing one can see and hear. The water in the Rain Room is endless because it never stops, its 1200 litres are constantly recycled and cleaned.
This latest attraction, which has been garnering immense attraction was inaugurated by His Highness Dr Shaikh Sultan Bin Mohammad Al Qasimi in the presence of Shaikha Hoor Bint Sultan Al Qasimi, president of Sharjah Art Foundation.
The German duo, Hannes Koch and Florian Ortkrass, founders of Random International are super thrilled that the Rain Room has found a permanent home at Sharjah Art Foundation. For the first time, the work has been installed in the middle east. It first opened at the Barbican Centre in London in 2012, followed by the Museum of Modern Art in New York, then the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and finally the Yuz Museum in Shanghai.
Rain Room has gotten popular not for its algorithm, but for the numerous happy encounters that have taken place within: selfies being taken, children trying to outrun the sensors and even couples getting engaged!
Tickets can be booked in advance or onsite; the prices are as follows-Dh25 for adults, Dh15 for teachers and students up to the age of 22, and free for children under five. Open from Saturday to Thursday: 9 a.m to 9 p.m and Friday: 4 p.m to 11 p.m.