Quest For Japan Logo-Ver7

Night Art Aquarium: Dance of a Goldfish

My visit to Japan would not be complete without traveling to the city of Kyoto. I have been there so many times before that one might wonder what is there more to see? This time around I came to see not the cherry blossoms, the temples, nor the momiji leaves that where in season (though I did see them on this trip well they were just so beautiful not to experience which I will tell you in another post). The real highlight of my visit were GOLDFISHES. Goldfishes in different colors and eye sizes – well I guess goldfishes with unique EYES. So you might wonder what is so great about these fishes that I traveled just to see them and paid 1500 yen for a ticket. Well don’t be shocked, apparently these fishes are as popular as the momiji leaves that were in season – a lot and I mean a lot of people were there to see them. They were apart of a popular art exhibit by Hidetomo Kimura entitled Art Aquarium : Dance of a Goldfish which is a mixture of contemporary art, colorful lights, music and goldfishes in uniquely designed fish tanks at Nijo Castle to commemorate its 20th year anniversary as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

From enjoying the momiji leaves at kiyomizudera, we hurriedly rode the bus to Nijo Castle thinking the exhibit would close at 9pm. We arrived at the venue at 8:30 asked the staff if the exhibit was still open and luckily we were told that the exhibit is open from 7pm to 10pm – HURRAY we made it! Once we got inside there was a waiting time for about 15 minutes to get tickets and another 15 minutes to get inside the exhibit. And it was so worth the wait!


The Four Seasons Aquarium which was the first on exhibit was so big and grand and had nishikigoi or carp fishes. It showed the changing season in Japan thru beautiful scenery projections. Honestly because of the hug volume of people that were there or maybe because I was so excited to see the other exhibits that I only saw this aquarium for a few minutes not even enough to see it change from one season to the other.

Four Seasons Aquarium

Autumn (Photo by Zengame on Flickr)

Winter (Photo by Zengame on Flickr)

Spring (Photo by Zengame on Flickr)

Summer (Photo by Zengame on Flickr)

From something so grand the next exhibit was a bit of a surprise – it was the only one with no fish in it – the Koto Momiji Fubuki. The exhibit had Kimonos and what appeared to be broken glass that changes colors – at one time it even resembled colors from momiji leaves.

The Andonrium exhibit where like guide lamps that lighted path ways. The fish tanks had laced like graphic designs in different color lights.

A Show of Kingyo were small open fish aquariums with three goldfishes on each tank – what made this exhibit for me so entertaining was the chance to get a closer look at the goldfishes. I never thought there where so many types of goldfishes some of them had huge popping eyes and even bloated cheeks.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

At first I thought the next exhibit was an over sized fish globe till one Japanese said it appears to resemble the earth rotating that was the only time I noticed that it did appear to rotate through the water that glided smoothly on its side.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The other exhibits featured aquariums with unique shapes like there was an aquarium with eight sides which had a prism like shape, another with bubble like circles all over the aquarium surface which made the goldfishes appear small and huge depending on which angle you see them, there was even an aquarium that closely resembled the shape of a diamond. There was also an hour glass shaped aquarium exhibit called the Paradoxrium.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The center piece for me would be the Oiran exhibit, though the shape of the aquarium was not as unique as the others as it was the closest to resemble a fish bowl we often see – it was the light effect and the shear size and number of fishes that was part of this exhibit that created a very dramatic effect that was a really a feast for once eyes. Unfortunately due to much excitement I guess or confusion we failed to see one exhibit the Kimonorium.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


Kimonorium (Photo by Guilhem Vellut on Flickr)

The exhibit by the way is from October 24, 2014 to December 14, 2014 and is open from 17:00 to 22:00 at Nijo Castle so if you happen to be in Kyoto make sure to drop by and see this one of a kind exhibit. And by the way they just announced the next venue for the exhibit, it will be in Osaka at Hankyu Umeda Hall for more information please visit this site.

The following two tabs change content below.

Sponsored Links

  • Pocket
  • 1 follow us in feedly

Related Article/s:

Shousou-in 2

Time Machine: Shousou-in Exhibition, Nara

What is “Shousou-in”? “Shousou” was a term for a repository owned and controlled by government offices or major temples during the Nara (710 – 784) and Heian periods (794 – 1185). “Shousou-in” meant the area where a group of “shousou” were built. Now, only one storehouse of “shousou-in” is existent, located at the temple Toudai-ji, […]

Read Article


Visiting Hokuei – The Birthplace of Detective Conan

One of the longest running manga and anime today is Meitantei Conan (lit. Great Detective Conan) or known as Case Closed in the West. To date, the manga has more than 80 volumes and the anime has more than 700 episodes. For those who are not familiar with it, it is about highschool detective who […]

Read Article


The Fukiya village in Okayama, Japan -Part 1-

I’ve been posting Momotarou-related articles so far, and to be honest, I’m getting a bit tired of recalling, researching and translating old stories. This time, I write about the Fukiya village in Okayama as an interval. Actually, I didn’t even know the name of the village until several years ago. I don’t remember how I […]

Read Article

real life tanuki

Are you okay, Tanuki? – The Japanese Raccoon Dog in Legends and Popular Culture

Last time, we talked about the sly kitsune or the Japanese fox. In this post, we will feature another animal that is popular in Japanese legends and myths and just like the kitsune, is sometimes depicted as a trickster, the tanuki or the Japanese raccoon dog. Tanuki, Not Your Ordinary Raccoon Though they look like […]

Read Article


Omihachiman and the man named William Merrell Vories – Part 1

Every time I visit Japan for work, one of the many highlights I look forward during my stay is to get to travel with my Japanese language teacher – I fondly call her sensei. We have traveled together to so many different tourist destinations around Kyoto and Okayama. Having her as a travel buddy is […]

Read Article


Koraku-en Garden by day, Fantasy Garden by night

The Koraku-en Garden is known to be one of the three great gardens of Japan. I must admit I have visited this place several times in the past in different seasons and spring by far for me is the best season to visit and enjoy strolls in this beautifully landscaped garden with the sakura in […]

Read Article


A Weekend in Nagasaki 2 – What to Eat in Nagasaki

A trip however short or long it may be won’t be complete if you can’t sample the taste of the local food of the place you’re visiting. While in Nagasaki, we made it a point to sample their local dishes and delicacies. Local Version of Dishes We Ate in Nagasaki Champon. On top of Nagasaki’s […]

Read Article

Tokyo Tower - the virtual world -

Into the Virtual World: Visiting Real-World Anime and Video Game Locations

Ever been fascinated with the sometimes too-good-to-be-true places you see in Japanese video games and anime? Ever wondered if the places are true so you can visit them to feel what it’s like to be there? Well, how about I tell you that some of them do really exist? And most of them, yeah you […]

Read Article

cosmos - Hokubo -

Hokubo Cosmos Field

When a colleague invited me to go cosmos viewing, I was hesitant at first. I’ve seen cosmos around the neighborhood where I lived in Japan. Sure, they are nice, beautiful flowers but they don’t draw me as much as roses, sunflowers, or my personal favourite, lilies. But rather than being stuck in the dormitory with nothing else […]

Read Article


How to Process Japanese Visa for Commercial Purposes

Planning to visit Japan for commercial purposes? I want to share with you about how to apply or the process of getting a Japanese Visa for any commercial purposes in the Philippines. This may sound a boring post, but this is important to me and might be important with some of you too. Application Requirements […]

Read Article

Sponsored Links

Leave a Reply

Sponsored Links

  • Google+