26-year old Miyu Kojima works for a company that cleans up after kodokushi or lonely deaths: a Japanese phenomenon of people dying alone and remaining undiscovered for a long period of time. She then recreates miniature replicas of the apartments.


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26-year old Miyu Kojima works for a company that cleans up after kodokushi or lonely deaths: a Japanese phenomenon of people dying alone and remaining undiscovered for a long period of time. She then recreates miniature replicas of the apartments.



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  1. > Kojima has been working for the clean-up company for about 4 years and explains that she cleans on average 300 rooms per year. To preserve and document the scene, the company always takes photographs of the rooms in case relatives want to see them. However, Kojima noticed that the photographs really don’t capture the sadness of the incident. And while she had no formal art training, she decided to go to her local craft store and buy supplies, which she used to create her replicas. She sometimes uses color-copies of the photographs, which she then sculpts into miniature objects.Kojima says that she spends about 1 month on each replica.

    [Source article](http://www.spoon-tamago.com/2018/10/03/miyu-kojima-miniature-kodokushi/)

    This one is striking: [In this instance the victim passed away in the bath due to heat shock and wasn’t discovered for 2 months. The reheating mechanism in the bath caused the decomposition to accelerate.](http://www.spoon-tamago.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/miyu-kojima-kodokushi-miniatures-2.jpg)

  2. I wonder why they don’t have assisted suicide in Japan.

    I mean, it seems like it’s in their culture, not to be brash.

    Wouldn’t it be more “honorable” to control those last days and avoid leaving this type of memory?

  3. I do something similar. I usually take everything people leave behind to the dump when they move away. Sometimes we will have to clear out a house where an older person was found and send all important documents or heirlooms to whatever family member we can find an address (or phone number to ask where to send the items and papers). It’s terrible to learn about how their families just abandoned them.

  4. wow.

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    [The woman who cleans up after ‘lonely deaths’ in Japan](https://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/features/2017/10/woman-cleans-lonely-deaths-japan-171012115412607.html)

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    “I mainly clean up these flats, apartments, houses where lonely death had happened and also organise their mementos,” says Miyu, who is in her second year of work at ToDo. On average, those whose homes she cleans, she says, may have been lying undiscovered for a month or two; the longest, eight months. Sometimes, they clean the homes of people who died in hospital, were murdered or committed suicide.

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