Watching a movie in the comfort of one’s home on a private home theater is no more considered a luxury. Many luxurious outdoor screen concepts have been developed that allow you watch movies while relaxing in your pool. Porsche Design Studio had incorporated the largest LED TV in the world in their theater system. There have been other initiatives but none of them have been as grand as the floating movie-theater set in the private island of Yao Noi in Andaman Sea, Thailand. Architect Ole Scheeren has created this temporary auditorium raft in collaboration with the Film on the Rocks Yao Noi Foundation. It is the location of the auditorium that is most unusual. It is a lagoon with calm waters. However, you have to take a choppy boat ride to reach the location. The beach is clean and as a backdrop you have a huge wall of rocks. Two smaller rocks jutting out of the sea create a kind of enclosure. It is this circular space which is the location of the floating theater and naturally surprised the guests. Even the thought of watching movies there was exciting. And each one of the guests loved the experience.
The temporary auditorium has been built basically by bringing together several rafts. Local fishermen farm lobsters on rafts and it was these rafts that were used to create this unique platform. Wooden frames were used to tie the rafts together with rubber straps. Several blocks were formed and wrapped in mosquito nets. The final construction was a simple modular design. The large screen was placed in front of the limestone protrusions of the Andaman. The auditorium raft floated above the sea water in front of the giant screen. It has been named the Archipelago Cinema and it delivers an out of this world experience. The unique theater was inaugurated with a select group of guests. It was part of the Thai film festival which is called Film on the Rocks Yao Noi. The modular design of the platform makes it easy to assemble or disassemble.
Nat Sarasas, Apichatpong Weerasethakul and Chomwan Weeraworawit preside over the foundation, however Chomwan Weeraworawit is the principal organizer and the brain behind the film festival. He owns Six Senses Yao Noi and brought together actors, writers, designers and artists. It was a four day event and the private island became the resort for outdoor film screenings, insanely scenic dinners and film discussions. Tom Sachs, a New York artist hosted a workshop and played his cult studio films. Renowned designer Waris Ahluwalia conducted a lesson on batik dying. The event space has been constructed in such a way that it can be towed anywhere. It is ideal for hosting a movie screening for a small gathering. The concept is a huge success because of the location and the kind of experience it delivers which is unmatched by any other outdoor theater concept. The concept was also appreciated for using recycled wood and is reusable. The Archipelago Cinema is sure to reappear soon somewhere else.