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”Why not hand over a shelter to hermit crabs?”, 2009

Japanese artist Aki Inomata creates intricately crafted plastic habitats for hermit crabs, which are influenced by the architecture of major cityscapes – Tokyo-style house, a parisian apartment, the New York City skyline. The semi-transparent, delicate forms are designed in the style of physical human environments, which ironically become a shelter for the aquatic arthropods. The biology of the hermit crab makes it a fascinating example of identity transfer – as they grow they require larger shells and periodically interchange their external portion with other members of the crustacean community. Inomata connects her study of the hermit’s transformation to the self-adaptation of humans, whether it be in acquiring a new nationality, relocating or immigrating.

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”Why not hand over a shelter to hermit crabs?”, 2009

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”Why not hand over a shelter to hermit crabs?”, 2009

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”Why not hand over a shelter to hermit crabs?”, 2009

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”World outside your world’, 2011

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”World outside your world’, 2011

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Installation view at the Ai Kowada Gallery, Japan