DeadSocial helped to raise the awareness of Dying Matters Awareness Week by taking over a popup space on Camden High Street in London and hosting a series of events over the course of the week. The annual "Dying Matters Awareness Week" seeks to raise awareness about death, dying & bereavement in the UK. It does so by evoking discussion around death, society and policies whilst providing material to help assist professionals and the general public to "be ready" for death.
Collectively we transformed the pop-up space (donated by the Collective Pop-Up as part of a Mayor of London initiative) into an immersive gallery with a strong focus on death, life, hopes and dreams. A "Before I die I would like to..." wall became the central point for the space.
A large character (called Gabriel) was drawn in the middle of the wall and comments were written all around the image. Over the course of the week scheduled events, seminars and performances took place in-front of the "Before I die..." wall. The space also played host to two death masks and two biodegradable coffins. One of the coffins was provided blank and we again added the text "Before I die I would like to..." onto it. The objective of this was to add an extra layer of interest to the space and make the coffin and the underlying subject matter of 'death' more approachable to the general public. There were also helium balloons scattered across the space with blank tags. Visitors wrote messages for loved ones who had passed away on the tags and then released them into the London sky.
During the week a number of speakers, workshops, screenings, drop in sessions and events took place. these included:
Free Tea, coffee and cakes were served throughout the week. There was also a stand providing Dying Matters support literature and other leaflets from local charities and speakers who had donated their time. This was a not for profit event and we would like to thank everyone involved who donated their time and energy in order to make it happen.
This wall was born in May, 2013. It died in May, 2013.
Made with love by ORGANISATIONS: Dying Matters, National Council for Palliative Care, DeadSocial, Camden Collective, Mayor of London, Death Cafe, Camden Town Unlimited, Natural Death Charity, Leverton & Sons, Memorial Masks, Hi Sushi, PEOPLE: James Norris, Jon Underwood, Dr. Patrick McDaid, Lawrence Darani, Susan Morris, Nim Njuguna, Richard Putt, Lori MacKellar, Nick Reynolds, Emily Engel, Tim Watt, Jack Rooke, Joshua Summana, Samira Abdinur, Jude Bennett, Joe Levenson, Sarah Stone, Joe Meredith, Candy Chang and everyone at Dying Matters & the National Council For Palliative Care who ran this year's Dying Matters Awareness Week.