Otaku’s design attempts to draw a portrait of a special relationship between our body and water.
Otaku is a bathtub designed by Tal Engel, realized as a final degree project in the University of the Arts, Berlin, and exposed in Cologne design Fair. Inspired by traditional asian boat building techniques, Otaku is made of a pressed woven veneer sheet and a steel frame. The pressed surface is coated with a polymeric material which allows water resistance and structural strength to carry heavy weights.
Engel’s design philosopphy suggests to define the fields of objects, interiors and furniture design as unique plataforms to form ideas, wich might have a significant impact on peoples way of living.
This project emphasizes on a unique relation between sailing and bathing – as states of mind, and between the boat and the bathtub as functional entities. This concept formulates an almost paradoxical analogy, from-which the ‘inside-out’ theory had emerged; the concept of washing in a bathtub is completely the opposite from the concept of floating in a boat – the inside becomes the outside. Hence, the ‘outside’ of the boat became the ‘inside’ of the bath. Based on this notion and by using a language of craft and industry, Otaku’s design attempts to draw a portrait of a special relationship between our body and water.