Jul 7th
Sep 24th
Photo: Art Aquarium

Art Aquarium 2017 2017

Where aquatic animals meet Art

Lisa Wallin   - 3 min read
Venue : Art Aquarium Museum When : Jul 7th - Sep 24th 2017, 11:00am - 11:30pm

Traditional Edo gets a modern and artsy twist in the annual Eco Edo Art Aquarium Nihonbashi event.

Since 2011, Nihonbashi has opened its doors every summer to a fantastical world of goldfish that has enthralled tens of thousands of visitors from all over the world. By making goldfish bowls into art, Art Aquarium is taking a time old tradition of goldfish gazing and turning it into a contemporary pastime to be enjoyed by all ages. Back in the Edo period, watching goldfish swim around was one of many ways to deal with the unbearable heat of summer as it supposedly had cooling effects on the body. Now we have air conditioning to cool us off, but goldfish viewing is still an event associated with summer. So it's no surprise perhaps that this exhibition is so entrancing — especially as the lights around the aquariums shift color as the goldfish glide past.

Different from your conventional exhibition, this year's Art Aquarium sees more than 8,000 fish — not just goldfish — take over the venue. Glorious goldfish are the main attraction, of course, but there are several different types of tropical fish, as well as a school of jellyfish in delightful hues of gray, blue and black.

This year's theme is "Palace of the Dragon King", a famous mythical underwater castle that features in Japanese folklore. Theatrical lighting, music and exceptional projection mapping immerse us into this mysterious underwater kingdom, where anything could happen.

From 7pm every night, the Art Aquarium transforms into an entertainment space with a well-stocked bar including exclusive cocktails. Famous DJs and artists perform regularly, and occasionally there will be nights with special performances featuring Oto-hime/Oiran and Geiko and Maiko themes. Don't miss it!

Ticket Prices

  • 1000 JPY (13 and older)
  • 600 JPY (12 and under)
  • Free entry for 3 and under

Children 12 and under need to be accompanied by a guardian.

Edo no Iki – Geisha Night

Art Aquarium will be holding a special event, reminiscing the era of the geisha and bygone traditions by preparing a special dance performance to remember. On September 3rd, 5th, 7th and 8th (21:30–23:30, last entry 23:00) ( tickets 2,500 yen inc. 1 drink), visitors can expect to experience a very special event in Tokyo that traditionally was performed in the tatami zashiki rooms Kyoto – don't miss out!

Edo no iki Geisha Night tickets available from Friday August 11th, 10am (e-plus ticket).

More info

Find out more about Art Aquarium Museum.

Lisa Wallin

Lisa Wallin @lisa.wallin

Lisa grew up traversing the globe as she immersed herself in various cultures, driven by a deep-seated need to understand the world around her. Japan ultimately became her home with its lure of scrumptious cuisine and a surprisingly dynamic underground music scene. When not working as a writer an...