The Documentary

The Documentary

Death Down Under

2012-13 (video, 64 min.)

The project was heavily documented by Kathy High, a SymbioticA resident and film maker from New York, and media artist Cynthia White.

This video was shot in Western Australia and follows the collaboration of a young fashion designer/artist and funeral celebrant, Pia Interlandi, and a forensic scientist, Ian Dadour. An experimental research project was created between them, allowing Pia to test out her fashion-for-the-dead and Ian, an entomologist who studies human homicide, to research clothing decay on dead (animal) victims. Pia and Ian had to amass a team to wash, dress and bury 21 dead pigs on a kangaroo reserve. Then they dug up the remains over one year’s time to examine the decay of the ritual burial garments. “Death Down Under” follows the entire process from gathering the slaughtered pigs to the results in the laboratory. This video looks at our care for the dead – be they human or non-human animals, and at ideas of green burials and the ecology of death.” – Kathy High

“Death Down Under” will be shown at film festivals around the world in the coming year. The first half of the film is now available online at Or for more information

It also includes a beautiful Zine by Diane Bertolo:

Death Down Under (part1) from Kathy High on Vimeo.