shaina garfield redesigns death with eco-friendly macramé coffin
 

shaina garfield redesigns death with eco-friendly macramé coffin

soon after shaina garfield realised her vision for an eco-friendly coffinshe noticed that what she had actually made was a coffin for herself. after being diagnosed with chronic lyme disease four years ago, the prospect of death caused a preoccupation that would eventually inspire her work as an industrial designer.

 

as she tackled the prospect of dying, she discovered an interesting contradiction between something that essentially brings people closer to earth, and the harmful impact death practices have on the planet. she discovered that traditional burials, embalming and cremation all involved the pollution of nasty chemicals and toxins.

shaina garfield spoke at design indaba 2019, a three-day conference bringing together the world’s leading creatives to share their work

 

 

speaking at design indaba 2019, shaina notes that we’ve become so far removed from nature as a result of human exceptionalism – the belief that humans are the most important entities in the universe. so she came up with ‘LEAVES’, a textile coffin built from sustainable materials, that hopes to bring us closer to the planet that we live on.

shaina garfield redesigns death with eco-friendly macramé coffin

LEAVES is a textile coffin built from sustainable materials
images courtesy of shaina garfield

 

composed of a netting that wraps around the deceased, LEAVES works to make the burial process a much greener ritual. the design uses rope which has been treated with a dye and embedded with spores, encouraging fungus growth that speeds up decomposition and eats any toxins in the body. a tree is then planted on the burial site, making the most of this nutrient rich soil. instead of cemeteries, shaina imagines luscious areas where nature is representative of the greater purpose our bodies can have.

shaina garfield redesigns death with eco-friendly macramé coffin

 

as much as it lessons the impact human burials have on the planet, LEAVES promotes positive discussions around death. drawing from funeral practices around the world, shaina considered ways in which her designs could help to support people with their grief. she imagines those mourning the death of someone coming together to tie the knots necessary to make the coffin, a meditative experience that intends to help with emotional healing.

shaina garfield redesigns death with eco-friendly macramé coffin

those mourning the death of someone can come together to tie the knots necessary to make the coffin

 

 

shaina describes herself as an advocate celebrating people and the earth‘, and it’s this relationship that forms the basis of her work. in a powerful description she exposes the reality that at death we are actively disconnected from nature. we choose at all costs to ‘keep ourselves in a domestic dream‘ and in the process, our consideration for the planet is nil. the natural resources it takes to make coffins, the toxins that are emitted into the air during cremation, and the chemicals seeping out of graveyards because of embalming, are all cause to believe that our attitudes towards death and the planet we live on are wrong.

shaina garfield redesigns death with eco-friendly macramé coffin

the design uses rope which has been treated with a dye and embedded with spores

shaina garfield redesigns death with eco-friendly macramé coffin

fungus growth that speeds up decomposition and eats any toxins in the body

shaina garfield redesigns death with eco-friendly macramé coffin

shaina describes herself as an ‘advocate celebrating people and the earth

shaina garfield redesigns death with eco-friendly macramé coffin

shaina imagines luscious areas where nature is representative of the greater purpose our bodies can have

 

 

project info

 

designer: sharna garfield

project: LEAVES

 

design-indaba-logo

 

design indaba
is a multifaceted platform committed to a better world through creativity. the south-african online publication hosts an annual festival and social impact do tank in cape town. the design indaba festival has been created by ravi naidoo in 1995, with focus on african and global creativity, through the lens of the work and ideas of leading thinkers and doers, opinion formers, trendsetters and industry experts.

  • That’s nice it gives some people ‘participation’ …and, is certainly more natural than showing just how willing you are to spend the Big bucks on the chrome casket and more flowers than your neighbours. Turn me into charcoal and dump me in the sea.

    Jimmy

    Jimmy Xi says:
  • Thank you! This is the best idea and design! I do hope this becomes a viable option!

    Deborah Fickett says:

have something to add? share your thoughts in our comments section below.
all comments are reviewed for the purposes of moderation before publishing.

comments policy
LOG IN
designboom's comment policy guidelines
generally speaking, if we publish something, it's because we're genuinely interested in the subject. we hope you'll share this interest and if you know even more about it, please share! our goal in the discussion threads is to have good conversation and we prefer constructive opinions. we and our readers have fun with entertaining ones. designboom welcomes alerts about typos, incorrect names, and the like.
the correction is at the discretion of the post editor and may not happen immediately.

what if you disagree with what we or another commenter has to say?
let's hear it! but please understand that offensive, inappropriate, or just plain annoying comments may be deleted or shortened.

- please do not make racist, sexist, anti-semitic, homophobic or otherwise offensive comments.
- please don't personally insult the writers or your fellow commenters.
- please avoid using offensive words, replacing a few letters with asterisks is not a valid workaround.
- please don't include your website or e-mail address in your comments for the purpose of self-promotion.
- please respect jury verdicts and do not discuss offensively on the competition results
(there is only one fist prize, and designboom usually asks renown professionals to help us to promote talent.
in addition to the awarded designs, we do feel that almost all deserve our attention, that is why we publish
the best 100-200 entries too.)

a link is allowed in comments as long as they add value in the form of information, images, humor, etc. (links to the front page of your personal blog or website are not okay). unwelcome links (to commercial products or services of others, offensive material etc. ) will be redacted. and, ... yes, spam gets banned. no, we do not post fake comments.

PRODUCT LIBRARY

a diverse digital database that acts as a valuable guide in gaining insight and information about a product directly from the manufacturer, and serves as a rich reference point in developing a project or scheme.

design news

×
keep up with our daily and weekly stories
486,587 subscribers
- see sample
- see sample
privacy policy