August 30, 2012

Goldfish as Art

The Art Aquarium exhibit at Nihonbashi Mitsui Hall, running until September 24, 2012.

The main theme is the Japanese goldfish, perhaps the humblest thing you can focus on. Yet, the exhibit wonderfully combines the traditional and the modern, celebrating Japanese culture by adopting a contemporary touch.

The exhibit is 1,000 yen for adults, and is open until 11:30 at night -- quite incredible! I went during daytime, but the exhibit itself takes place in a darkened space. Drinks are served after 7:00 pm, and there is even a DJ on hand.

Photography is encouraged,  so long as flash isn't used.

Each type of goldfish (this is a ranchu) is labeled, allowing dumbfounded visitors to learn a new name or two.

 ...and I thought demekin were extreme. These look positively anime.

 The glass tanks and giant vases were Venini glass, allowing for a collaboration of sorts.

Goldfish swimming against a video backdrop -- an idea that needed to be taken further to be truly radical.

It did not help that the video looked like generic stock images.

What are the triangles?


 A play on light and shadows, using the traditional tapestry as a backdrop.

Poor fish stuck to the air suctions. Maintaining the health of the fish must be difficult here.

Go see it.

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