Hannes Koch of Random International, the collective that created the acclaimed Rain Room art installation, has warned that fake versions pose potential health and safety risks.
A permanent and unauthorised falling rain attraction, reminiscent of Random International’s original, is being installed in Shanghai.
This version is part of the new $15m Jiajiale Dream Park.
There has been a flood of interest in Rain Room ever since an authentic version of the work was exhibited at the Yuz Museum in Shanghai in late 2015. Imitations have subsequently sprung up across China.
The Art Newspaper reports there were two in Shanghai when the original piece was first on view. Since then, other versions, often linked to property developments, have been displayed in Beijing, Ningbo, Fuzhou, Yinchuan and Xining.
One company reports that renting ‘rain zones’ is brisk business.
According to Koch, there have been around 8 to ten attempts to ‘rip off’ the work so far. He has voiced concerns about the potential healthy and safety risks associated with the fake versions, saying that Random International spent time and effort to ensure the room operated safely.
“Legionella [disease-causing bacteria that thrive in water systems]… are a lethal threat to the elderly and children in particular,” he warned.
Random International is currently considering whether Jiajiale Dream Park has violated the group’s intellectual property rights.
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