December 9, 2013, 12:32 pm
G:Dropboxwork_competitiondeath_innovationdrawingsD_infograpG:Dropboxwork_competitiondeath_innovationdrawingsD_infograpG:Dropboxwork_competitiondeath_innovationdrawingsD_infograpG:Dropboxwork_competitiondeath_innovationdrawingsD_infograpG:Dropboxwork_competitiondeath_innovationdrawingsD_infograpG:Dropboxwork_competitiondeath_innovationdrawingsD_infograpG:Dropboxwork_competitiondeath_innovationdrawingsD_infograpG:Dropboxwork_competitiondeath_innovationdrawingsD_infograpG:Dropboxwork_competitiondeath_innovationdrawingsD_infograpG:Dropboxwork_competitiondeath_innovationdrawingsD_infograpG:Dropboxwork_competitiondeath_innovationdrawingsD_infograpG:Dropboxwork_competitiondeath_innovationdrawingsD_infograpG:Dropboxwork_competitiondeath_innovationdrawingsD_infograpZA architects  (15)ZA architects  (16)
Current conditions: Burial procedures with no doubt are among the most stable social and ecological layers, somewhere between religion and nature, thus it is difficult for people to accept changes in this pattern. Indeed, comparing with progress in other stratums of human life our funeral culture almost hasn’t change for the last 1000 years or even more. Of course the growing popularity of cremation helps somehow, but it only helps to adjust everlasting traditions to modern conditions. But what about the traditions itself? Dust or bones end out their life in columbarium or cemetery of any kind. And besides cemeteries that become historical tourist attractions (as Highgate or Pere-Lachaise) they share following drawbacks: 1. Cemetery/ columbarium takes too much space, in world of megalopolisation it pushes graveyard to the city outskirts, it is lead to second feature. 2. Location which can be not easy to visit. 3. If graveyard is nevertheless located somewhere in the city, it is closed territory that can’t be easily visited by the townsmen, thus it is loose of valuable municipal area. 4. Graveyard/columbarium is monofunctional, devoted only to the people that came to visit their relative’s grave. Considering that in 10 years after death such visits are hardly more often than twice per year, it is extremely underused area. 5. Grave itself with picture/text/sculpture doesn’t help to memorize or recognize the person. 6. Buried body contaminates soil.

Goals Considering above mentioned, our project solutions are focused on three purposes:
1. Improvement of the memory. Using both, material and nonmaterial we want to make cloud of content around each person that pass away.
2. Compaction. Why do we have to keep dust and bones, if one single hair contains all genetic information, while one memory card can store all media data about numerous people?
3. And most important – Socialization. We don’t need empty cemeteries anymore. Just imagine how interesting can be experience and life story of any single man, so why not to share it with those who alive? In our new concept cemetery is not a cemetery, but vibrant public domain. It is not a place of silence, it is place of dialogue. It is a Memory museum.
We propose not a new kind of funeral architecture, but the new funeral culture. In this culture memory keeping and dead body are separated. After traditional funeral rites, it is proposed to take DNA-example (e.g. – hair, nail, etc.) and some valuable personal things (e.g. – ring, medal, watch etc.). Corpse is than directed to be cremated and dispersed out of the city. DNA-capsule will be stored in the museum together with personal thing. On the surface of the capsule there is a 2D-code. Anyone with Smartphone can read this code and get access to media content about deceased – which is non-material memory while valuable thing exhibited nearby and presence of DNA-instance in the capsule must give feeling of materiality and information for the further generation.
As a location Singapore was selected. It is a city-state located on the very compact territory with one of the highest density of population in the world and have only one cemetery still in use. This place indeed requires the new solutions. Project site is located in the downtown, near the Clark Quay and Riverside Point. Plot area – 0.95 ha. Complex contain park, under the park hills there are an underground parking for visitors, cafe and funeral centre which house funeral services for all confessions in Singapore. First museum tower is located on the north-east side of the plot. One tower accommodate 495 100 DNA capsules, together with personal belongings. It is proposed to build four towers during next 80 years, it will cover all needs of Singapore in burials for this period. Eventually museum will hold 1 980 400 capsules and exhibits, which makes it real treasury. If this area was used for traditional graveyard, it could hold only 5000 graves…
The Tower Core of the tower is an atrium, which can be used for a variety of events and installations. Around the atrium twine two helicoidal pedestrian ramps, one inside another one. On the top ramps are weaved and way up turns to way down. Walking direction can be switched also on flat areas, which connect ramps twice per one turnover. In between these two ramps located parapet-storage for the DNA-capsules. Above, between parapet and ceiling there is a showcase with exhibits. Each religious community has their own area for capsules storing and these areas are equispaced. On the ramps there are numerous observation balconies directed outside to the city and inside to the atrium. In the underground there is mediatheque, where visitors can look for media on the workstations, take a rest, cup of coffee, etc. Structural framework consists of two distorted hexagrid hyperboloids made of steel that clench helicoidal ramps inside and outside. Tower is transparent – no walls, no windows. From south side it is equipped with photovoltaic panels, which have to cover mediatheque needs in energy.
Funeral centre: The main design task of the funeral centre is the issue of its segregation from the rest of the complex, with the purpose of separating the people that come there heart-broken for funeral rites, from the people who came just to visit museum and park. Underground floor house all service facilities (mortuary, make-up room, etc.). Dead bodies delivered directly here with hearse via underground entry. After preparation, body is lifted up with elevator to one of the ceremonial chapel, on the ground floor. All chapels oriented to the centre’s atrium, which is not accessible or visible from outside. After ceremony dead body is delivered back to the hearse, which brings it to the cremation plot outside the city.
Funeral centre also offers a lobby, rooms for relaxation and office premises.
Park Beside usual park functions it also offers cafe, ponds, and some exclusive funeral chambers. Relief of the park forms amphitheatres and benches to sit on and observe river, city scenery and so on. Ponds also used for floating DNA-capsules and floating candle performances. Ponds are also a place for prospective towers.

ARCHITECT: ZA architects
LOCATION: Singapoore, ERP 25 CTE / Merchant Road
DESCRIPTION: Institutional / Cultural – museum
STATUS: Competition
PLOT AREA: 0.95 ha
DATE: 2013
DESIGN: Dmitry Zhuikov, Arina Agieieva
DRAWINGS / IMAGES: ZA architects
TEXT: ZA architects
SOURCE: ZA architects
The Memory Museum by ZA architects in Singapore
The Memory Museum by ZA architects in Singapore

The architects propose not a new kind of funeral architecture, but the new funeral culture based on DNA capsules and personal belongings stored in towers under a 2D code read by any Smartphone.

morfae on Google+
MORFAE: the shape of things | Copyright MMXIII MORFAE.