Is the New Museum ‘Psycho Tank’ Giving People Ear Infections?


The Carsten Höller Experience exhibit at the New Museum is doing very well — so well, in fact, that the price of admission was just raised to a hefty $16. But it’s not all innocent fun and sliding and hanging out in sensory deprivation pools; according to an item on Gothamist today, the salty Psycho Tank might be giving people ear infections. A reader who visited the exhibit at the end of November wrote to them:

My boyfriend and I waited in line for three hours to float in the sensory deprivation tank… Which means that I would float around naked in a tank that many museum visitors had already been in that day. I recognize some risks here, but the water was heavily chemically treated, and the NY Health Department had already cracked down on them for some issues, so I figured, how much more dangerous could this be than a typical pool?

Well, at least marginally more dangerous. Two days later, we both had very painful ear infections in both ears. I had never had an ear infection in my life! After 8 days of antibiotics, our ear infections are STILL not gone. I tried to post this information on their Tumblr, but surprise, surprise, the moderator has not yet approved my post.

Yuck. But also, what do you expect? People are basically falling over each other to get into this sensory deprivation tank, so there will be some germs. In fact, two people out of the hundreds, maybe thousands that have already been in there is not bad, as far as chances go.