International Structure Rises from Resin Hermit Crab Shells in Aki Inomata’s Consideration of House and Borders


All photographs © Aki Inomata, shared with permission

When hermit crabs outgrow their shells, they take part in an encouraging act of useful resource sharing. The crustaceans line up by measurement and swap houses, and hopefully, every creature finds an appropriately sized shelter. Choices are usually restricted to the shells washed up on shore, until Tokyo-based artist Aki Inomata is concerned.

Since 2009, Inomata has been designing tiny houses for hermit crabs topped with towering skyscrapers, windmills, and church buildings. A part of an ongoing collection titled Why Not Hand Over a ‘Shelter’ to Hermit Crabs?, the 3D-printed resin works resemble city landscapes and draw similarities between human and animal environments. Inomata’s designs, though not launched into the wild, evoke the species’ natural exchanges as a strategy to contemplate the evolving nature of house.


The artist shares in a press release that the challenge was born out of her participation in the 2009 No Man’s Land exhibition on the French Embassy in Japan, the ultimate present within the house earlier than the constructing was demolished. She elaborates:

This work was impressed by the truth that the land of the previous French Embassy in Japan had been French till October 2009, after which turned Japanese for the next fifty years, after which will probably be returned to France…A bit of land is peacefully exchanged between two nations. Whereas it’s the similar piece of land, our definition of it adjustments. In the identical method, the looks of hermit crabs adjustments utterly as they change shelters. The hermit crabs in my piece, who change shelters representing cities of the world, appear to be crossing over nationwide borders.

Now greater than a decade since Inomata started the collection, the challenge takes on extra significance given the surge in migration and refugee crises around the globe. The array of worldwide structure permits people to seamlessly swap Western streets for Jap palaces or capacious areas for dense cities, emphasizing the potential for extra communal, cooperative dwelling.

Head to Vimeo to look at the crustaceans scuttle alongside sporting Inomata’s works, and comply with additions to the challenge on Instagram.


Do tales and artists like this matter to you? Develop into a Colossal Member as we speak and help unbiased arts publishing for as little as $5 monthly. The article International Structure Rises from Resin Hermit Crab Shells in Aki Inomata’s Consideration of House and Borders appeared first on Colossal.