From 26 November, visitors to Marina Bay Sands can journey through the skies and traverse the land and sea below as international art collective teamLab unveils several large-scale digital installations across two iconic landmarks at the integrated resort. ArtScience Museum’s permanent exhibition, Future World: Where Art Meets Science, as well as ArtScience Museum Digital Light Canvas by teamLab at The Shoppes, will reopen following extensive redevelopment works to reveal artworks that invite visitors of all backgrounds to experience these dynamic spaces in a new light.
Since its opening in 2016, Future World has welcomed close to 3 million visitors through its doors. Continually evolving as science, technology, and art progress, the exhibition will now present three interactive installations in a new gallery titled Exploring New Frontiers, that encourages visitors to see the skies above as a place of inspiration and discovery. At the same time, in its very first revamp, Digital Light Canvas by teamLab will unveil a new artwork that explores nature and biodiversity, focusing on endangered species and the roles that living things play within an ecosystem. Within this space, visitors can also turn their creations into unique souvenirs to bring home.
“Marina Bay Sands is delighted to be working with globally renowned art collective, teamLab, in bringing stunning new interactive installations to our audiences in Singapore. What makes teamLab so unique is their ability to immerse visitors in digital worlds, whilst simultaneously inspiring us to care more deeply about the natural world and our impact on it. The new artwork we are unveiling at Digital Light Canvas by teamLab explores biodiversity and the interconnected nature of living ecosystems, whilst shining a light on endangered species. In one of the most dramatic transformations we have undertaken so far, Future World at ArtScience Museum is also evolving with new installations that form a gallery called Exploring New Frontiers, which takes visitors on a journey outward and upward into the skies. These spectacular new interactive artworks are part of Marina Bay Sands’ commitment to creating unforgettable experiences that will surprise and delight audiences as they return to visit us again and again,” said Honor Harger, Vice President of ArtScience Museum and Attractions.
“We hope that by immersing themselves in the artworks with intention, understanding the complex and three-dimensional world with their bodies, and creating a new one with others, people visiting Future World and Digital Light Canvas by teamLab will be able to make new discoveries and develop new ways of perceiving the world,” said Toshiyuki Inoko, founder of teamLab.
Future World: Where Art Meets Science
Exploring New Frontiers
Future World has undergone a major transformation to house a new gallery titled Exploring New Frontiers in place of Sanctuary and Park. Serving as a second chapter to the exhibition, the new gallery invites visitors to take flight and explore the world above.
Since the beginning of time, the heavens above have been a source of inspiration for dreams, mythologies, and artistic visions. Humanity has also always looked to the sky with curiosity, observing celestial bodies, weather phenomena and birds in flight. Despite remarkable progress in mankind’s pursuit of understanding life on Earth and beyond, much remains unknown. In addition to the mysterious forces that shape the universe, science is still uncovering more about the fundamental principles governing nature on this planet.
In Exploring New Frontiers, the sky becomes the focus. Visitors are invited to begin their journey by observing the phenomena of self-organisation – the natural emergence of order out of chaos – before taking to the skies alongside birds and aircraft to experience the world as other living creatures of the air perceive it. In the final section of the exhibition, teamLab will transport visitors into astronomical space with Crystal Universe, a dazzling installation which remains a crowd favourite. In each of the artworks at Exploring New Frontiers, the beauty of nature creates an environment for one’s imaginations to soar.
i. Autonomous Abstraction, Continuous Phenomena from the Universe to the Self
In nature, many fireflies can be observed gathering in one place and flickering at the same time to create a brighter glow in what can be referred to as self-organisation. Also known as ‘spontaneous order’ in the social sciences, this describes the natural emergence of order from what seems like chaos.
Autonomous Abstraction, Continuous Phenomena from the Universe to the Self is a new abstract installation that explores this phenomenon. In the artwork, points of light flicker and change in colour. As visitors interact with the artwork in a free and disordered manner, causing the points of light to disperse, the points that are closer to each other will gradually synchronise in hue and rhythm, giving rise to spontaneous order.
When these different rhythms influence and synchronise with each other, self-organisation takes place. This can be observed in many natural systems – from physics and biology to physiology and ecosystems. Scientists believe that when entropy – or the lack of order – increases in the universe, all entities will eventually collapse. Through this artwork, teamLab brings to the fore how miraculous it is that the Sun evolved, the planets in our Solar System were born, and that life developed on Earth followed by the existence of societies. teamLab muses that perhaps the universe, life, nature, and society continue to exist despite entropy because order is continuously formed on its own through self-organisation. It is suggested that one might imagine the universe and their own existence as a continuous order created by the same phenomenon.
ii. Aerial Climbing Through a Flock of Colored Birds
Certain birds, such as starlings, fly in the thousands in a swooping dance of intricately coordinated patterns that are known as a murmuration. These flocks neither appear to have a leader, nor have a way of communicating their planned movements.
In this artwork, visitors are invited to experience the world with one’s entire body as they climb and navigate an aerial structure consisting of colourful horizontal bars suspended in mid-air. Each person’s movement influences the artwork as well as others in the space, creating patterns of light, colour, and sound. Flocks of birds also soar freely around the installation, changing in colour whenever they fly close to people.
This artwork explores the idea of flight by allowing visitors to see the world from the perspective of airplanes and living creatures in the sky. Visitors are invited to draw and colour airplanes, hawks and butterflies on papers provided, before seeing their creations become part of a virtual world projected against a giant screen. In an added interactive feature, visitors are also able to pilot their creations with a tablet.
The world is perceived differently by different living creatures. Coming from the German word for ‘environment’, the term umwelt refers to the unique sensory world of an organism. In comparison to humans, the umwelt of a hawk and butterfly is very different – hawks can focus on two things simultaneously, while butterflies have a 340-degree field of vision. In Sketch Flight, visitors can not only experience the world through their eyes but also co-create the artwork together.
For more details on the artworks at Future World, visit www.marinabaysands.com/museum/exhibitions/future-world.html All photos are credited to teamLab.