Behind this extraordinary, ethereal installation is Tokyo-based teamLab, a cooperative of tech specialists. A part of an extensive exhibition at Miraikan National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation, this piece is called “Floating Flower Garden” and was inspired by Nanquan Puyuan, a Zen koan (parable).
Nanquan was the founder of a famous monastery in Japan and legend has that he spent 30 consecutive years in a mountain. Nanquan only left the mountain he had dedicated his life on when the governor asked him to go and teach the people who lived below. Among other things, his Zen teachings are also about how humans and nature are one and the same, brought together in a smoothly continuous fabric of life itself.
“Floating Flower Garden” is designed so that viewers can walk through a hanging garden without actually getting … flowered. Sensors that detect an approaching viewer cause flowers in that viewer’s vicinity to rise. This setup allows for a “hemispherical space with the viewer at its center” that moves with the viewer.
Originally scheduled to close on 1st March, 2015, the garden will now stay open to the public until 10th May after popular demand. So, if in Tokyo, make sure you do not miss it.