Der Trauerautomat: the vending machine designed to support mourners during funerals.

The frieze inscription on the Krematorium Sihlfeld, one of the oldest crematories in Switzerland, reads: “Flamme, löse das Vergängliche auf. Befreit ist das Unsterbliche”, translated as “Flame, dissolve the ephemeral. Be the immortal released”. With its neoclassicist elements the crematory, surrounded by a scenic chestnut lined alley, monumentalizes the process of incineration, and it sculpts into stone a, if not the, transcendental resolution to terrestrial human death. As a consequence, the symbolisms and institutional practices concerning human loss, and eventually grief, tend to be equally parochial, at odds with our…

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