Miyu Kojima creates scenes based on rooms she has cleaned after solitary deaths
It was at a trade show for the funeral industry that Miyu Kojima had what might seem at first like a macabre idea.
Kojima, 27, works for To-Do Company, a cleaning firm that specialises in the apartments of the recently deceased. Many of their jobs involve kodokushi (solitary deaths), where people die alone and are not found for days, a phenomenon that has recently gripped the Japanese imagination.
The company was advertising its services at the trade show by displaying photos of the rooms theyd cleaned. But the photos are gruesome to look at, Kojima said. I felt they lacked respect for the deceased and for their family to be exposed like that.
So she bought some glue, polystyrene board, knives and other craft materials, and got to work.
The results are laid out on a table at the To-Do offices in north Tokyo, a narrow warehouse crowded with two vans and boxes of cleaning supplies, and they are astonishing: miniature models of rooms in which people have recently died.
The bodies are gone but the evidence is preserved in hyper-realistic detail: stained blankets, darkened floors, abandoned cats.