Installed as part of a major refurbishment, Kinetic Rain is a commissioned, site-specific project. A much loved artwork at the airport known as the Mylar Cord fountain was decommissioned during Changi’s upgrade. This work is commemorated in Kinetic Rain, located in the same place and fulfilling an expressed desire early in the refurbishment plans to incorporate a water feature reminiscent of the Mylar Cord work. The new work, however, takes the idea of water and carries it forward, incorporating the concept of water via its droplets but combining this with advanced computer technology and engineering.
As somewhat placeless places—they are never one’s final desitnation—airports may be an undesirable location, but one with a rapidly emerging and evolving design specialty. Populated with boutiques, bars, cafes, hotels, and other attractions, airports are rapidly becoming a classic example of postmodern third-space and an increasingly common part of life for an emerging global community. Design led airports such as the Changi redevelopment are creating small cities, targeted to make your time there more comfortable and more conducive to social interaction—major components of placemaking. While the departure terminal can ring with emotion ranging from sadness at leaving loved ones to candid frustration and boredom, Kinetic Rain offers an alternative—an elegant sixteen minutes of mesmerising fluidity to transport and soothe travellers along their journey.
All copyright belongs to Shanghai Academy of Fine Arts, Shanghai University.