teamLab Borderless Azabudai Hills: Microcosmoses - Wobbling Light
teamLab, Microcosmoses - Wobbling Light © teamLabMicrocosmoses - Wobbling Light

teamLab Borderless sneak peek: 4 new installation rooms with jaw-dropping art

Your first look at the latest and newest features at teamLab’s highly anticipated opening in Tokyo

Emma Steen
Written by
Emma Steen

Running one of the world’s most visited museums is no small feat, as the squadron of engineers, designers, creative directors and communication leads at teamLab will tell you. While the digital art collective’s first permanent museum, Borderless, broke a Guinness World Record for being the most-visited museum dedicated to a single artist or entity at its Odaiba location in 2021, leasing agreements forced the facility to close in 2022 and find a new location. 

After many months of waiting, teamLab Borderless is finally set to reopen on February 9 2024, having found a home in the lower levels of the new Azabudai Hills complex. Though the collective will inevitably be perfecting their final touch-ups until the eleventh hour, teamLab has given us a sneak peek at some of the new installations coming to the new location. Here’s a quick overview of the four spaces we’ve seen so far.  

teamLab, Microcosmoses - Wobbling Light © teamLab
Photo: teamLab, Microcosmoses - Wobbling Light © teamLab

Microcosmoses - Wobbling Light

In this prismatic mirrored room, dozens of reflective spheres roll along a winding track at different speeds, like dewdrops sliding down blades of grass. The spheres appear to react to each other and sporadically light up when they move through a space.

The lights from the centre of each sphere can emit 43 different colours, but do so in a way that makes it difficult to identify one specific hue as the light bounces throughout the reflected surfaces in the room. Your intrusive thoughts might urge you to give the baubles a little poke as they roll past you, but sadly you’re not supposed to touch this exhibit. 

teamLab Borderless
Photo: teamLab, Light Vortex © teamLab

Light Sculpture series 

teamLab’s ‘Light Sculpture’ series is taken to new heights and they are all showcased in one room. The scope of this single space is astounding. Here, moving lights fitted on the floor, walls and ceilings emit multi-coloured beams that intersect with each other to create a three-dimensional effect. 

teamLab has finalised 15 ‘light sculptures’ for this series so far, including the dynamic red ‘Birth’ piece and ‘Light Vortex’, which will make you feel like you’re being swallowed whole by a cosmic vacuum. This extensive curation, however, is expected to expand even further in the near future. 

teamLab Borderless
Photo: © teamLabFlowers and People - Megalith Crystal Formation (work in progress)

Megalith Crystal Formation 

Another room that features multiple artworks within one space is the ‘Megalith Formation’ room. Upon entering this initially dark space, you are met with a stunning display of blooming red flowers that respond to your presence, forming the ‘Flowers and People’ artwork. The room's ambience then shifts as the 'Black Waves' artwork takes over, encapsulating the essence of oceanic waves and calligraphic lines emblematic of classical East Asian art. 

teamLab Borderless
Photo: teamLab, Bubble Universe: Physical Light, Bubbles of Light, Wobbling Light, and Environmental Light - One Stroke © teamLab

Bubble Universe

Last but not least, is of course the ‘Bubble Universe’ installation, officially titled ‘Bubble Universe: Physical Light, Bubbles of Light, Wobbling Light, and Environmental Light - One Stroke’ (try saying that in one breath!). This fantastical space is filled with hundreds of reflective bubbles that hang from the ceiling in a mirrored room, creating an infinite world of softly glowing lights.

This stunning backdrop will probably grace every Instagram feed and dating app profile from Japan to Jamaica eventually. However, this is the sort of experience that photos will never bring justice to, no matter how good your iPhone camera is. 

teamLab Borderless will open at its new location in Azabudai Hills on February 9 2024. Tickets for February through mid-April are now available online

For more information, check the teamLab Borderless website.

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