Deep under water
bobbing in and out of sleep
in a small room

And with a short poem (translated by S&T), thus begins the senior thesis exhibition of student designer Yuriko Sakai. In Japan, the smallest unit of living space is 1-tsubo (roughly 36 sq ft). Within this ultimately tiny space – in a fashion similar to that of Chiharu Shiota – Sakai uses yarn to define space. However, Sakai sets herself apart primarily through an acute orderliness that places various elements – liquidity, transparency and depth – into her confined space.

I would imagine that sitting down in the chair, which is at the center of Sakai’s installation, one must look up and feel as though they are looking up from the bottom of a well. Sakai has aptly named her piece “the room of a kappa,” a legendary water being that might very well be found living in a well.

I discovered Sakai’s work while exploring the 2012 exhibition of graduation works from Tokyo University of the Arts. You can see all our coverage on student art work here.