Cloud Necropolis

Funerary cult of the future
Karlsruher Institut fürTechnologie

Lageplan  | Stadt

Lageplan | Nachbarschaft

Grundriss | Park

Grundriss | Park

Axo | Gesamt

Axo | Gesamt








Axo | Gewächshaus

Axo | Scanroom

Axo | Verwaltung

Axo | Obduktion

Schnitt |  Auditorium

Schnitt | Ascheturm

Visualisierung | Turm

Visualisierung | Park

The cemetery is and always has been a special place in every culture: necessary, sacred, frightening and representative. Sure, is it is one of the things which is found in every society and in every time. Though the way the cemetery functions and the tradition may alter it is still the same at core.

When you look at the transformation of the typology of the graveyard in Germany you can see how the value of the deceased alters in the different époques and with that the localization of the graveyard as well as the morphology.

When you look at the early stages in the roman empire. The Necropolis as they called it was outside of the city boarder. There wasn’t any welfare system for the people, so everyone had to take care of themselves and their families or they were disposed anonymously.

But when Christianity was becoming the main religion it has changed. The graveyard moved inside the city. In underground catacombs the corpses were placed near Martyrs waiting for the resurrection on the judgment day.

The martyr cult went on. Martyr relics were placed in the middle of churches forming a sacred aura on which people could be buried only, so they can go to haven.

Later the dogma of the burial was given up in favour to bigger more representative graveyards of the community outside the city.

The cemetery and the funerary cult in Germany today are changing. The geaveyards are getting emptier day by day, because of the change in burial rituals and also the kind of burial. As the welfare of the Communities falls apart and the structures of families become looser, the current state of funerary cults of today seems to be inoperative for Germany. The consequences are that many people are buried anonymously or cremated to keep the maintain costs low or are interred elsewhere. Cemeteries are forced to shrink or must close due to low occupancy rate. The other aspect of today society is that a lot of mourning is expressed not at the cemetery but via Internet in social media or elsewhere. The grief and mourning are getting more viewable, publicly and practically. Because the is seemingly more and more data from and about us on the internet it is becoming an opportunity for the new rituals for the future.

As a Green, collective and heterotopic space it holds great value for the city and enriches the city on many levels. So, the question should be how we can adapt the typology of the cemetery for the future, so that the disposal of bodies doesn’t just be-come a technical solution without further influence on the city and people?

The Plot is located in Berlin,Neukölln, next to the former Airport „Tempelhofer Feld“ an the busy „Hermannstraße“. The plot is a part of a cmetery cluster, which is not in use right now. The park inside the cemetery forms a connection between the „Tempelhofer Feld“ and „Hermannstraße“. Besides the two main entraces the the six main buildings are set at the neurological end points of the city grid.

The initial idea was to look at current topic which are in development or are already there.
Like communication between the deceased and the living, the alkali hydrolysis and the prophylactic scanning.
There are some companies which offer the service of communication with deceased friends and relatives by uploading the whole information which is available online and transform it into an algorithm which can act like the former person.
The hydrolysis is the most ecological form of body disposal nowadays. The body dissolves in an alkaline solution, leaving a liquid with nutrition, artefacts that were implanted in the body and porous, white bone remains, which can be easily formed into white-coloured dust.

The prophylactic scanning has been used as a pilot project  to interview survivors of the holocaust, so they can share their impression and memories with others  after they are gone. This is done by scanning them with 122 cameras, while interviewing them. The process  can be easily expanded onto the memories of ordinary people. So they can share their experiences with their relatives and  friends after the death.