The latest craze to hit the art scene is drawing the attention of many and rightfully so. An Art Aquarium in Tokyo, Japan has captured the attention of art lovers as well as Tokyo’s general population otherwise neutral to the art world . The Art Aquarium is called Hidetomo Kimura’s Art Aquarium. This art aquarium offers an highly unique experience by mixing contemporary art, Japanese culture, and Tokyo, Japans popular nightlife scene.
Hidetomo Kimura’s Art Aquarium is a very popular annual exhibit that draws vastly different walks of life to the exhibition each year; over 300 million visitors already. Visitors to the display enjoy cocktails, view custom-designed fishtanks ignited with superb lighting effects which highlight the tanks filled with exotic goldfish. In the background, a DJ is on sight spinning tunes.
The Art Aquarium is located within Nihombashi Mitsui Hall and is put on by Artist and Producer, Kimura. Worth pointing out is that Kimura is also noted as being an“Aquartist”. Kimura is highly regarded for his exhibit of over 5000 “bizarrely beautiful” fish all contently displaying in fish tanks which are penetrated and highlighted by deployments of colorful light. During the start of the art aquarium show, Kimura states that, “Beyond the technology that catches people’s heart, there lies natural beauty this earth has created”; the Kingyo goldfish.
So who are the stars of this exhibit? The fish are. In Japanese culture, the goldfish, Kingyo, has always been a very cherished form of art to the culture. Dating back to 1502 the Kingyo goldfish was imported in China and from there made it’s way into the Japanese culture. Initially the Kingyo was only available to the wealthy and elite who cherished the unique and strange features of the fish. Owners of the rare breed of goldfish would later go on to emphasize and ultimately exaggerate the goldfish’s features by breeding the fish to create even more pronounced characteristics. These characteristics are features such as the Kingyo’s bulging eyes, puffy cheeks and wrinkled foreheads.
The inspiration for this art display is derived from the deep traditional practices in the Japanese culture.
*Photos curtesy of: Sarah Cascone.