It’s taken me three months, but I finally got see the Rain Room at the Barbican today. The five-month exhibition is an art installation which gives visitors the chance to control the rain. We had been warned on the website that queues were likely due to the popularity and limited numbers allowed in the exhibition at a time. We arrived about 12:45pm on a Friday afternoon and didn’t get into the Rain Room until about 2:30pm, but the queue was inside the Barbican Centre so we were able to sit on the floor and get coffee from the nearby Costa Coffee stand so didn’t feel too long. When you first enter the Curve exhibition hall, you can hear the rain before you see it and see the shadows of those in the installation dancing along the wall.
The Rain Room is essentially a huge shower in a square grid lit up by one solitary white spotlight, which somehow uses sensors to turn off rain where people are standing or walk so in theory you shouldn’t get wet. While it seemed to work for my friend and other guests, I unfortunately got rather wet which I didn’t understand. However, when I looked at the website after my visit, it said if you were dark clothing (I was in a black coat) there was a chance you could get wet. Dampness aside, Rain Room was definitely worth the queue. It was a quirky, unique art exhibition which was fun to experience… but maybe wear something with a hood just in case.
- The Rain Room at the Curve, Barbican Centre. Runs daily from 11am until 8pm (10pm on Thursday) until Sunday 3 March 2013. Free admission. Be prepared to queue around two to three hours. Nearest tube: Barbican or Moorgate. For more information, visit the Barbican website.