Death / Design


Last weekend, we I took a really random stroll around National Design Centre and I'm so glad we did.
We saw this exhibition, Death by Design, which showcases a series of projects relating designs to the usual rituals of death.

Sponsored by Nirvana Memorial Garden and supported by Design Singapore Council, the students from the Division of Industrial Design, National University of Singapore are the ones responsible for the projects and performed under the supervision of assistant professor Hans Tan. 

Please don't mind me saying this from my very honest point of view, but often the rituals of death can be pretty impractical; maybe time-consuming, non-environmentally-friendly and perhaps can cause some form of inconveniences to others, especially when we live in a multi-racial society in Singapore.

1) Remembering, you 

Bone remains of your loved ones preserved in glass; surely a rememberance in display.

2) The Last of Me 

Prepare the very final words you wish to say to the people you love and have them stored in the system for you.
Everyday the company will check with the death registry/the government for new death reports and be updated; they will send out the very last message you left for your loved ones framed up nicely, the perfect memento of the final words you have.

 3) Death, do not have to do us part 

I was a little taken aback by this actually; the idea to use the bone remains of our deceased loved one as bone clay to be made into dinnerware which in a way brings us closer to the ones the loved us/we loved dearly in this manner.
Unique.. but I think it is indeed a little unconventional and somehow disrespectful to the dead, I think?
To each his own I guess.

 4) Blood shall always be thicker than water 

If you think that this urn looks nothing unusual; this is actually made of your loved one's blood.
20% of the blood will be taken from the body to be mixed into the clay and then to create the urn that will be specially used to store the remaining remains of your loved ones.

100% uniquely his/hers.

5) Because stones symbolises comfort, strength and patience.

Turn those bone remains of your loved ones into stones that are connected with ying-yang energy and symbolizes solidity, stability and gravity. 

6) Sea cremation in the simplest form;

Due to it's shape, the urn will turn in circles and down into the water, neatly dispersing the ashes and sea cremation is done easily and fuss-free.
Location of cremation will be located by the urn at the bottom and sent to the loved ones.

 7) Loved ones' last words in a QR code

Just scan the QR code and you will be able to read what are the last words your loved ones left you.

  8) Ash scattering by wind

By wind, the ashes that are incorporated into rice mixture will be dispersed and flutter to the ground. It signifies a new life, new growth, a new journey.

9) Joss paper in a "cheque" form?

I really love this idea I have to say.
This one has no residues, no paper ashes, nothing.
It is made of flash paper so imagine how environmentally-friendly this is!

10) Marble designed niches to store urns 

Another idea that I really like.
Niches for urns should be something intimate for familes to remember their loved ones.

I admit I do feel curious when at the columbarium and tend to end up looking at niches of other deceased which can be quite disrespectful to a certain extent.

With this new design, this can be prevented.
The marble absorbs the water and fades away in awhile.
Perfect when the family visits and respectful enough for the deceased.

Super impressed with these new ideas/designs.
I honestly never gave much thought about all these except for the possible environmental issues burning joss papers can cause and this exhibition literally shows how some everyday issues we face especially when it comes to a taboo like death.

Worth a visit and I definitely hope that this project can be further supported and be turned into future possible ideas for the challenges we face especially in our ever-changing society.

Venue : National Design Centre 
Address : 111 Middle Road Singapore 188969 
 Price : Free

Top : Set Apart Store
Skirt : TACT Singapore
Necklace : Forever21
Clutch : Taiwan

Photos by : @aggylow 

Thanks for reading

With love,

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