Anyone with a penchant for Japanese history and a love of Japanese artistry will recognize the Japanese Goldfish, “Kingyo,” as a cultural motif instantly. From anime and manga, high fashion, and the occasional tattoo; kingyo cultural significance dates back to when they were kept as rare novelties of the rich and wealthy of the Edo Period 500+ years ago. Starting in the Meiji era though, people started keeping them as pets and even based a popular festival game, kingyo sukui or “goldfish scooping”, on the premise that if you’re dexterous enough to scoop a fish out using a flimsy scoop, you get to keep your new pet! For those of us lacking the space and/or time to give to the golden swimmers in our homes, there is the Art Aquarium exhibits.
Make that a TANK of fish. Self-proclaimed “aquarist” Hidetomo Kimura combines visual, aural and spatial art along with goldfish to create a traveling pop-up gallery like no other. The Tokyo exhibition is being held at Nihonbashi Mitsui Hall for the last time after a run of 8 years, the largest ever collection of 10,000 goldfish is on display along with a compilation of artwork to complement it. A combination of crystal, glass, paint, light, sound, and water immerses all senses into a new world where the fish seem to dance in mid-air.
During the day you can check out the exhibits at your leisure, but after 7 pm most nights, the Night Aquarium comes alive and the venue takes on the style of an Old Edo Era saloon with a 21st-century makeover. Enjoy Kyo-Mai traditional geisha and maiko performances one evening or a selection of the hottest club DJs the next. Check the calendar for details.
Nihonbashi Mitsui Hall
5F, COREDO Muromachi 1
Nihonbashi Muromachi 2-2-1, Chuo-ku, Tokyo
By Train: Mitsukoshi-Mae station [G,Z]; Shin-Nihonbashi station [JO]
Dates & Times: Now until 23 Sept 2019 Everyday. 11am~10pm, Saturdays until 11 pm. Special Event Days have a slightly different schedule; check this page for info.
Ticket Fees: ¥1000; 12yrs and younger, ¥600; 3yrs and below, Free. Please access pre-order and discount ticket information here.
Images Courtesy http://artaquarium.jp/