Cremains of the Day: Sex and Death from the Netherlands

21 Grams by artist Mark Sturkenboom: A spot for the wedding ring, the scent, the favorite song, and more...
21 Grams by artist Mark Sturkenboom: A spot for the wedding ring, the scent, the favorite song, and more…
“Sex and death” is a phrase with more resonance when you put Marvin Gaye on the iPod and open the lid of the 21 Grams memory-box. Artist Mark Sturkenboom of the Netherlands has created a way to… well, see, the deceased's ashes go into a… oh, we'd rather let him explain:

21 Grams is a memory-box that allows a widow to go back to the intimate memories of a lost beloved one...By bringing different nostalgic moments together like the scent of his perfume, ‘their’ music, reviving the moment he gave her her first ring opens a window to go back to moments of love and intimacy… The urn offers the possibility to conserve 21 grams of ashes of the deceased and displays an immortal desire…

Most importantly, the artist's goal is, he says, to display “an accusation against the unavoidable passing of life. 21 Grams speaks in metaphors, not in shock value.” (I'm not sure I agree with you a hundred percent on your police work there, Lou.)

21 grams is a reference to what's been hypothesized as the weight of the soul, a slight difference in body mass after death measured by Dr. Duncan MacDougall in 1901. And in soulful fashion, cremains have now even become what was once euphemistically called a marital aid. Don't even think about trying to bill us for brain bleach.

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