Haunted Play House is Torafu Architects’ creative exhibit designed especially for children to touch art while frolicking in and around the space. Featured in one of the galleries at the Museum of Contemporary Art Tokyo, the architectural installation–a giant, white cube set in the center with paintings hanging on its exterior walls–is built like a gallery space with components that resemble quirky and spooky elements found in a haunted funhouse.
The special gallery features a number of classic paintings like the Mona Lisa with a playful twist to keep kids interested in going to museums. In fact, children are literally able to twist and turn paintings, getting extremely hands-on with replicas of fine art. There are even secret passages that allow little ones to enter the internal space through illusive picture frames. Inside, there are even more tricks and fun to be had. Whether the kids are inside the central cube or outside, they determine what the exhibit will actually look like.
This is one art gallery that invites interactive collaboration and encourages its visitors to touch and manipulate the artwork. It breaks the traditional rules of museums that suffocate the innately playful and curious nature of children–’Don’t Run’, ‘Don’t Touch’, ‘Keep Quiet’–allowing them to actually enjoy their visit to a museum. Additionally, the featured artwork is unlike other exhibits as eyes dart back and forth and hands can emerge through a painting at any moment.