One of the city’s top art festivals, the annual Roppongi Art Night will be celebrating its tenth anniversary this year. It is a one-night-only multi-site art extravaganza that turns the entire Roppongi area into one big outdoor gallery, featuring a range of works by local and international artists.
The programme starts on Saturday May 25 and runs non-stop through the night until Sunday May 26. You can expect more than just contemporary art; think design, film, performance and even participatory/experiential installations. Here are our top picks: the seven works of art that you should not miss (plus, they’re free).
Oversized fruit and vegetable sculptures made of synthetic plastic will transform the Roppongi Hills Arena into a magical garden. This work by South Korean artist Choi Jeong Hwa seeks to celebrate the beauty of both nature and artifacts.
Roppongi Hills Arena, May 25 5.30pm - May 26 6am, 11am-6pm
Choi Jeong Hwa also has another installation over at Tokyo Midtown Plaza. This work, made from (approximately) ten thousand colourful balloons, evokes fun, nostalgic childhood memories while highlighting the excessive nature of our modern, consumption-drive lifestyle.
Tokyo Midtown Plaza, May 25 10am - May 26 6pm
Rainbow in the Darkness
This participatory art project by artist Chuang Chih-Wei features large glass cubes that have been painted black. Feel free to etch a message or doddle onto the surface, and when night falls, the cubes will light up from within, illuminating the graffiti.
Roppongi Hills North Tower, May 25 10am - May 26 6pm
Like a scene from a horror movie, this ‘jumpscare’ by artist Hiroyasu Shimo may look like an ordinary vending machine – until you buy a drink. Then, terrifying images of people ‘trapped inside the machine’ may suddenly appear next to you. This is actually a commentary of how we are ‘held captive’ by the modern day economy.
Roppongi Hills North Tower and selected locations, May 25 10am - May 26 6pm
Enter this polyhedron by artist Masato Tanaka, insert your hand into an optical device, and have images of your hand projected within and outside the architectural structure. This exercise seeks to help you become more aware of the relationship between your body, light and the perception of sight.
Roppongi Hills Hillside 1F, May 25 10am - May 26 6pm
The Sound of Giants Toys
Oreka TX, known for their performances using the traditional txalaparta percussion instrument from Spain’s Basque region, will create a spectacular fantasy world utilising giant puppets, a tumbler doll in a ‘snowglobe’ and several other performers.
Roppongi Hills Arena, May 25 6.30pm-7pm, May 26 5.30pm-6pm.
Featuring layers of membrane made from translucent polyethylene, this large-scale sculptural installation is created by artist Yasuaki Ohnishi to lend a perceptible and physical dimension to the volume and movement of air.
Roppongi Hills West Walk 2F, May 25 10am - May 26 6pm
Note: Images are for illustration purposes only. Actual artwork may differ. For more information about Roppongi Art Night 2019, check our listing here.