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Monash Art Design & Architecture

Unity temple, crematorium, and cemetery on Merri Creek's Reserve.

Death, even if insignificant for who has died, prompts a number of activities for those who remain living–most of them related to funeral rites and mourning, as the farewell to someone beloved is one the most intense moments human beings can experience. So had you ever thought that death (and especially dead people) also need specific spatial configurations?

Funeral rites, regardless of the religion to which they belong to, require spaces where a number of highly specific activities take place. And these spaces must facilitate pragmatic and efficient occupations in atmospheres where light, shadow and silence interact with landscapes of timelessness and permanence

This studio represents the opportunity to reflect upon these particular circumstances, and design the spaces that are required at the moment of death. In this way, the studio stresses the significance of the production of appropriate spatial configurations within the full cycle of life.

Specifically, students will be required to investigate and design spaces for a funeral and burial ceremony, based on the following program:

A unity temple: a space where people from different religions can mourn, celebrate and remember the life of a person who has died.

A crematorium: the place where the body is reduced to ashes by being burned at very high temperatures.

A cemetery: the area where ashes and/or bodies are buried.

The studio seeks to develop a hybrid project that integrates architecture and landscape architecture in a challenging scenario that requires the simultaneous resolution of different components at multiple scales.

ARC 2002
Mondays and Thursdays from 1.30 to 4.30 pm
Studio leader: Isabel Lasala

Monash University
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