Photo: MooNam StockPhoto/Shutterstock

This Art Installation Is a Giant Pool Where You Definitely Can't Swim

Singapore Art + Architecture
by Matador Creators Jan 12, 2023

Balancing practicality and beauty is the character of an excellent architect but it’s not a feat that artists strive to achieve — art needs no function, it just exists to be art. In the case of “Rain Oculus”, an art installation located in Singapore, it took both the wits and skills of an excellent architect (Moshe Safdie) and that an open-minded artist (Ned Kahn) to accomplish the amazing result we can gawk at today.


Rain Oculus in Singapore😳🌪️ A large whirlpool forms inside a 70 foot diameter acrylic bowl and falls 2 stories A large whirlpool forms inside a 70-foot diameter acrylic bowl and falls 2 stories to a pool below. The artwork, a collaboration with architect Moshe Safdie, functions as both a skylight and a rain collector. The rain water is recycled back to the whirlpool and also fills a canal that runs through the atrium. The pumps that direct water into the bowl are turned on and off a few times an hour so the whirlpool is always changing in shape and intensity. At peak flow rates there are 8000 gallons per minute falling through the atrium and 200 tons of water swirling around in the bowl. Extensive prototyping and engineering went into integrating the artwork into the structural and mechanical systems of the building. Completed in 2011. Would you visit? 📍 Marina Bay Sands, Singapore Ig: @cocokulit101

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Indeed, “Rain Oculus” is a mesmerizing art piece, a rain collection system, and a skylight. It consists of two round pools: One transparent pool outside measuring 70 feet in diameter and containing about 200 tons of water that swirls in an intense whirpool, and pool inside the Marina Bay Sands resort, two floors below the first one. The indoor pool receives the water that flows out from the outdoor one.

The Rain Oculus in Singapore

Photo: MooNam StockPhoto/Shutterstock

The outdoor transparent pool allows light to shine into this corner of the Marina Bay Sands resort, but it also attracts crowds who want to see the power of this manmade urban waterfall that can gush out up to 8000 gallons of water per minute.

The indoor pool is connected to a canal that runs through The Shoppes, the shopping area of the Marina Bay Sands resort. Visitor can even take a ride on the canal and around “Rain Oculus” in a sampan, a small traditional Chinese boat.

The water used for “Rain Oculus” and the canal comes from rainfall collected in the outdoor pool, and is constantly being reused for the purpose of this art piece.

If you find yourself in Marina Bay Sands (home to the world’s largest rooftop infinity pool) make sure to check both elements of this art piece, the outdoor and the indoor one, to get a complete picture of the stunt that the artist and architect successfully performed.

No matter how appealing taking a dive in either pool might be to you, do not attempt it. It is dangerous and forbidden.

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