01 September 2014
The Londoner's Guide to London
A unique coffin exhibition at Southbank Centre takes place during January 2012 as the centre celebrates the final taboo of death. With a mix of events taking place to mark the festival of death for the living, there are plenty of events to catch your eyes, ears and minds, including some fanastically creative coffins.
Coffin exhibition at Southbank Centre
Whether you want to be buried in a traditional satin lined open cask, mummified like an ancient Egyptian or cast out to sea in a flaming Viking boat burial, everyone has to be disposed of somehow when they die. Taking place as part of the death festival at Southbank Centre, an exhibition of some of the most unusual coffin designs from both the UK and Ghana goes on display to make people think differently about their demise.
Crazy Coffins and Paa Joe
Exhibits in the coffin exhibition at Southbank Centre come from Crazy Coffins of Nottingham and the Paa Joe workshop in Ghana, both of whom have a reputation for designing and creating some of most unusual coffins around. With a tradition of flamboyant funeral processions in Ghanaian culture, Paa Joe has created the likes of an aeroplane, fishes, eagles, cocoa pods and cars for his clients, while Crazy Coffins in Nottingham have covered traditional coffins with giant ballet slippers and even Red Bull drinks cans.
On show on the level 2 foyer of the Royal Festival Hall, visitors to the Death festival can see all kinds of quirky coffin designs. A white Mercedes style car and a huge spiky maned lion are both on loan from the Paa Joe workshop, while Crazy Coffins have donated a bright yellow skip and a intriguing skiing themed coffin, which needs to be seen to be believed. Not just a exploration of the ways in which different people express their personalities beyond death, the works on show in the coffin exhibition at Southbank Centre demonstrate a changing attitude towards the culture of death and how we mark the end of someone's life.
Asides from the coffin exhibition various other death related events are taking place as part of this unusual festival, giving visitors the chance to really get to grips with aspects of popping your clogs. From music inspired by death, a play about euthanasia, talks and debates on the best ways to die and the most eco friendly burials, to the art of obituary writing and what happens to our digital data when we die, there is plenty to inspire those with a little (healthy) morbid curiousity.
Death Festival at Southbank Centre
Boxed, the coffin exhibition at Southbank Centre takes place from Friday 20th - Sunday 29th January 2012. Entrance is free.
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