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Art in Island's revamped look takes art and technology to greater heights

By John Patrick Magno Ranara Published Mar 28, 2023 8:40 pm

Art in Island, the country's largest mixed media art museum, has returned.

Now rebranded as "The Media Square," the museum's new look comes after it temporarily closed for renovation, transforming it into a place where you can immerse yourself in a spellbinding world of creativity and imagination.

The new artworks were made possible through collaborations with renowned Korean artists specializing in computer design, sculpture, and crafts, as well as technicians utilizing the latest media equipment from South Korea.

Without further, here's what's in store for you inside the newly-revamped Art in Island:

A new adventure with nature

Art in Island: The Media Square boasts a total of two floors with 15 areas, each packed with amazing installations.

The first floor is dubbed as "The Mystery Of Mother Nature," and by the name itself, it provides an experience where you can transcend time and space and become one with nature's miracles.

As you step inside the darkened museum, let your mind wander and absorb the dazzling movement of waves and stars from its first zone, titled Welcome Wave

The room introduces you Art in Island's main attraction, projection mapping, which is a video projection technique that turns ordinary objects such as walls and floors into a canvas that displays an astonishing experience of light and illusion.

The next zone, titled Gate of the Journey, has gorgeous oceanic paintings made ethereal by the glowing lights above. It's a fitting space that prepares you for the next area, Light of the Sea.

Here, all of the walls are covered with underwater landscapes that are hand-painted by artists, elevated by illusions of all kinds of life beneath the sea, such as whale sharks, sea turtles, jellyfish—all of which move in an elegant and hypnotizing manner.

The zone starts off with a scenery that is merely composed of floating particles that then transform into the sea creatures. It symbolizes how life starts from small particles that eventually evolve into other forms until they connect to one whole being.

From water, you'll then move onto land in the next zone called Myth of the Jungle, where your eyes will be hypnotized by a mystical light whooshing through the jungle, seeping into the living nature.

Similar to the Light of the Sea, the area's walls are hand-painted with breathtaking nature landscapes that is overlayed with illusions of creatures such as hummingbirds and deers.

Exiting the jungle, you'll then be brought to the next room dubbed as Stream of Life 2022, which houses iconic artworks from famous artists such as Leonardo da Vinci's "Mona Lisa," "Starry Night" by Vincent van Gogh, "The Scream" by Edvard Munch, and many more—each of them having their own twist as part of the interactive experience.

The area's name comes from the 2,022 sea turtle lights hanging from above that symbolize the museum's long journey in getting renovated, as baby sea turtles are known for their hazardous trek from their nest to the sea.

A little further from this is the Hiwaga ng Pilipinas, a zone that puts the spotlight towards wildlife and sceneries that are unique to the Philippines, such as the Philippine eagle, tarsiers, the Banaue Rice Terraces, and more. Perhaps the most magical area of them all, Hiwaga ng Pilipinas uses neon paint and black light technology to bathe the artworks in a mesmerizing glow under the darkened surrounding.

After this, you will now reach A Circle of Seasons, that is considered the "climax" of the museum's first floor as well as the largest zone of all. Here, you'll be surrounded by 12 feet high walls showcasing the four seasonal cycles—spring, summer, autumn, and winter—using projection mapping, with each of them having several sceneries in display.

The room also has bean bags in place where you can get comfortable as you watch the seasons transpire. It is recommended that you stay in the area for about 16 minutes if you want to witness the full cycle.

All of these areas are accompanied by a soothing background music that synchronizes with the projections, resulting in a truly masterful work that delights, gratifies, and rejuvinates your senses.

A time for healing and reflection

While the first floor is touted as where all the thrill, excitement, and passion of a new adventure is felt, the second floor is where those emotions die down and are replaced by a comforting appetite for reflection and relaxation. 

As you ascend, you'll be brought into Bridge Over Dreams, a place that boasts murals depicting beautiful city landscapes that are all connected by a light display above, which serves as a sort of bridge into the world of our wonderful fantasies filled with interwoven dreams.

The next zones are the Secret of Lights, which is a small mirrored room that is brimming with a symphony of infinite lights, and the Sleeping Forest, a place where you can sit down and have a moment to yourself underneath the towering flower sculptures.

Afterwards, you'll pass through the Window of Tales, which has murals of Christmas sceneries before you'll get to a zone called Recollection. Despite the room's small space, its walls hold a thousand memories showcasing Art in Island's journey from how it started in 2014 until it closed for renovation in 2022.

Afterwards you'll pass through the Records in Lights, which are projection mapping installations showcasing different sceneries such as nature, stunning architecture, space, seasons, and more, before you'll reach This is not a shadow. This is one of the museum's most interactive zones as this is where your own shadow becomes a form of art through skillful utilization of lighting.

Your adventure finally reaches its conclusion in The Stage, a rather simple room with two chairs in front of a wide screen displaying different sceneries. Resembling a cinema, this is where you get to finally reflect and reminisce your adventures throughout the different zones as the main character before finally closing your journey at Art in Island.

If you can't wait to be the main character of this immersive museum, you can avail tickets for P850, with discounts given to junior high and college students at P700, and kindergarten, grade school students, senior citizens, and persons with disabilities at P600. Children who are three feet and below, meanwhile, get a free admission.

It is important that you wear socks to enter the museum. You are also not allowed to bring pets inside nor any food or drinks.