Hands up if you’re part of the 1% who actually skated there

  • By Amanda Chai
  • | Dec 04, 2017

Keeping things fresh, fun and festive, Marina Bay Sands is set to unveil a new permanent art attraction on Dec 22, just in time for the holidays. The immersive Digital Light Canvas will take over the now closed “ice” skating rink at the North Promenade of The Shoppes at MBS. You know the one—the 600 sq m rink of oiled plastic smack in the middle of the Rasapura Masters food court, where the thick-skinned and courageous could previously skate to the stares of bored tourists, watching over the tops of their overpriced mixed rice.

Digital Light Canvas will likely fare much better. If the multi-sensory combination of technology and digital art looks familiar, it’s because it comes from Japanese art collective teamLab; the same people who created the now iconic Future World exhibit at ArtScience Museum, plus the equally stunning Story of the Forest attraction within the Glass Rotunda at the National Museum of Singapore.

This new attraction takes the form of a 14-meter tall light sculpture suspended from the ceiling, with more than 401,000 full-colored LEDs strung within. The LEDs are part of an interactive technology—using your smartphone, you can project pre-programmed 3D objects onto the installation, and leave your mark for all (the food court diners) to see. In addition beneath the light sculpture, a dynamic LED floor consisting of over 7.7 million individually controlled LEDS renders graphics in real time in reaction to people’s behaviour and movement. The LED floor, surprise surprise, takes the space where the former rink was.

Visitors located within the vicinity will also be able to set off a series of digital reactions and customized messages on the installation, through an exclusive on-site Wi-Fi. Of course, don’t expect your little contribution to the art world to last for long. The attraction features four different show modes that change with or without the visitor renderings, so no two scenes are ever the same. The show modes—Nature’s Rhythm, Strokes of Life, Personalised Expressions and Festive Celebration—feature everything from fishes swimming in the ocean to exploding crystal fireworks (activated only during “celebratory seasons”).

If you’d like, you can even cast a personalized greeting, birthday wish or wedding proposal on the LED floor for $50. The massive installation will be visible for all to see, but walking the LED floor and interacting with the light displays will cost you. Admission is $5 per person—a fair price to pay for what will hopefully be some damn good art.

We’ll miss the rink, but anything from teamLab is always a welcome step up.


Digital Light Canvas will open Dec 22 daily from 12pm-8pm (Sun-Thurs) and 12pm-9pm (Fri-Sat).