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A French-Inspired Garden and Home by Judith Stringham

Rain Room, Rain Dances

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Rain Room 
is a contemporary work of art, commissioned for Restoration Hardware's 
RH Contemporary Art Gallery in New York City. 

The work is a room-sized 328-square-foot field of falling water 
that pauses whenever a human body is present. 
As the body moves, the water falls around them, but never on them. 
…viewers waited upward of 13 hours to enter into an interactive encounter with rain.
from Restoration Hardware Interiors Catalog, 2014

This contemporary art piece mimics life in North Texas. 
Falling water pauses wherever a human body is present. 
Or so it seems. 

Summer months are HOT, often with 100°+ temperatures, and rain is sporadic. 
Leaves turn brown and drop from the trees to conserve water for preservation of life. 
A tree sacrifices some leaves to save itself. 

The trees in our yard look green, but the ground is littered with fallen dead leaves, 
casualties of no rain for weeks. 

While blogging friends in the north, especially bloggers in Canada, 
report the first winds of fall are teasing them, 
the fallen leaves here are not the first signs of fall. 
No, these leaves say hot summer with no rain is still here.

Rain skirts around our area, pausing wherever a human body is present. 
Thunderstorms rain upon our neighbors to the north, west, east, south, 
but not even a sprinkle on us. 

Then the rains came Sunday, August 17. 
All day long, steady, heavy rains. 
Cover your head with covers, roll over, listen to the rain spatter on the windows.  
So much rain that local weathermen reported DFW had the most rainfall
in the past 20 years for a single day in August. 

So much rain that the blue bowl on the back deck
filled halfway with water in just one single day.
Going from dry to half full. 

Leaf casualties stripped from the trees during the deluge look deceptively like fall. 

Now, that's my kind of rain. Where it falls on humans, not around them. 

Rain dances. 
Where Gene Kelly dances in the rain, tapping/stomping in the puddles,
swinging his umbrella around him, lifting his face up for rain to pour down on him.
Truly an interactive encounter with rain. 

How can falling water pausing be called interactive? 
That seems like not interacting with the rain. 

I must admit I am intrigued by the Rain Room and
would jump at a chance to see it in person.
The technology is mystifying. How do they do that?
How does the room sense a human body to stop the fall of the water.
Will our houses be programmed in the future to sense when their owners enter? 

To learn more or to see a Rain Room photo, visit
RH Contemporary Art

For me, I am happy to dance in the rain, as are all the little creatures around me.