teamLab : Transcending Boundaries at the Pace Gallery

In February I visited the teamLab: Transcending Boundaries exhibition at the Pace Gallery. teamLab is a Japanese art collective comprised of artists, designers, engineers, and mathematicians who create interactive digital art that pushes the boundaries between art and science (so their exhibition is very appropriately named). I've been a fan of their work for a couple of years and am always in awe of their new installations. One of my favourite series of installations by them is the Future World: Where Art Meets Science exhibition at the ArtScience museum in Singapore. I would love to visit it one day before it closes.

When I found out that teamLab were going to have an exhibition in London, I was so excited. I was even happier when I saw that tickets were free. Of course they got reserved very quickly so I was very lucky to find out about it in time. 

Entry to the exhibition was very well organised as there was a very limited amount of people for each time slot. This meant that it was easy to walk around and see everything without it being too crowded. The main feature of the first room in the exhibition was  a projection of a waterfall and flowers that moved around visitors as they walked through it. It was fascinating to see how it adapted and shifted to newcomers of the environment.

This piece on another wall was also very interactive as when you hit the butterflies with your hand, they disappeared. I like how the butterflies flew beyond the confines of the edges of the screens, as if they were entering another realm.

This piece was very Hokusai-esque, and I can imagine how much effort went into the programming of the particles to create such beautiful and complex movement.

There was a second room where you were given a white scarf on entry to emphasise the effect of flowers being projected onto you. I'm glad they had them as I was wearing all black (as usual) so I wouldn't have been able to see the full effect of it on myself otherwise.

As someone who has an appreciation for both art and science, I love how teamLab combine the two so beautifully. I really enjoyed this exhibition and my only complaint is that it felt like my time slot ended too quickly (I could have stayed in there for hours). I'm very inspired by their work and would love to be able to experiment with creating installations combining art, animation, and programming like they do. I hope that their work will return to London soon (and on a bigger scale, perhaps at somewhere like the Saatchi gallery, Tate Modern, or the V&A).


Winter Lights Festival in Canary Wharf

During January I visited the Winter Lights Festival in Canary Wharf. It featured a display of 30 different light sculptures and installations, spread out around different locations in the area. Canary Wharf has always been one of my favourite parts of London as it's so clean and modern looking. I think it was a great location for the light show. 

I thought this piece was simple yet nice. I like how it utilises the absence of light.

This piece was interesting because it changed colours and you could actually stand inside of it.

These was a series of neon benches that changed colour. This was my favourite colour configuration.

This was one of my favourites. It used a EEG headset to synchronise the lighting to the wearer's brainwaves. I love the intersection of art and science in this piece.

An absolutely stunning water and light show. All the different components were so beautifully in sync.

 The Winter Lights Festival was amazing and I hope it returns next year.


Las Vegas Part 8: Downtown - Container Park & Fremont

After going to the Neon Museum which I talked about in my previous post, we explored downtown. Downtown Las Vegas was quite different from The Strip as it was less flashy and had a cooler, more vintage feel to it. It's where most of the older hotels are, and is the place locals prefer to hang out.

Some cool street art.

The Container Park was filled with lots of cute, small, and quirky shops. There was also a playing area for children in the centre. 

One of the cutest displays of love locks I've seen anywhere.

This praying mantis looks cool now but during the evening it lit up and shot fire out of its antennae (which startled me multiple times.)

There were so many cute details in the Container Park such as this clock and all the fairy lights.

A lovely view from the top of the mountains in the distance.

Here you can see the children's playing area which had a cool slide. 

Hanging out the sign because why not?

During the day we ate at 'Le Thai' which was really good! I saw amazing reviews for it online and I was not disappointed as the food was so good. I had my usual Thai green curry and it was one of the best I've ever had.

It really came alive at night when all the lights were on.

We went to Fremont Street which had a lot to see such as old hotels, street entertainers, zip lining, and a light show. I also got my nose pierced at a tattoo shop there because why go to Vegas and not do something crazy? Since I'm too young to go to casinos or clubs this was the craziest I could get. I actually took my piercing out a couple of weeks ago because reasons, but it was fun while it lasted.

The light show was displayed on the big screen you can see above. To be honest, the one that played when I was there wasn't that interesting, but I can imagine how breathtaking it must be at other times as it's so big. 

The old Vegas hotels had thousands of lights on their exteriors and a lot of them flashed in patterns. They were absolutely stunning and were the stereotypical thing I imagined when I thought of Vegas before visiting. As I said in my last post, it's a good thing that Vegas uses a lot of renewable energy as these must consume so much power.

We returned to the Container Park after visiting Fremont to get some hot chocolate. The praying mantis looked even more amazing when it was lit up. (Fire shooting out of antennae not pictured.) I think Downtown Las Vegas is much cooler than the Strip and I wish I had spent more of my time there. Next time! 

This concludes my posts about Las Vegas, and I can finally start to write about things I've been up to in 2017 :) I'm looking forward to writing about various art exhibitions, concerts, and my trip to Copenhagen in February. 


Las Vegas Part 7: Neon Museum

My favourite part of my Vegas trip was visiting the Neon Museum. It was in Downtown Las Vegas and featured old neon signs from hotels and casinos.  In order to visit you had to book a guided tour where a guide would give you the history of all the different signs. There was an option to visit at night which I rally wanted to do, but it was already booked up when we were ordering our tickets. However, I think it was actually better to go during the day as I was able to get better pictures, and most of the signs don't light up, only a select few that have been restored. Since I'm writing this post 6 months after visiting, I don't remember most of the backstories behind the signs to be honest. 

The sign above is one of my favourites. It's from the 'Moulin Rouge' hotel and the letters were arranged to read 'in love' (the sign was so large it was hard to get a good picture with the 'in' showing as well). One of the most interesting things about this museum was being able to get so close to these signs and get some perspective of how big they actually are. It's hard to tell how big they are when they're high up and far away. Most of them were bigger than me (which isn't a hard thing to achieve to be honest, but anyways).

I quite like the effect of the wearing on the signs as it gives them some character.

Some of the signs actually had thousands of lights on them. It made me wonder how much power they must consume. It's a good thing that Las Vegas uses a lot of renewable energy!

This sculpture was really tall! It was another one of my favourite pieces at the museum.

I thought this large skull was really cool too. I kind of had the urge to climb it but of course that's not allowed...

The Neon Museum was beautiful and it's definitely worth going to. There's so many signs to see and the guide was really informative. The rest of the Downtown area was really cool too and I'll be writing about that in my next post.

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