Requiem for the Missing

A choir of hooded monks, walking in slow procession around the courtyard of Somerset House. The requiem contrasts dramatic scenes of a decaying body with ethereal visions of heaven, and includes traditional texts from the Requiem Mass, as well as Buddhist meditations and 18th century coroners’ reports.

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Requiem for the Missing is based on five texts: Psalm 88, The Nine Cemetery Contemplations, Pie Jesu, A Woman Unknown and In Paradisum.

Psalm 88 – The darkest of all the psalms, ending without resolution “You have taken my companions and loved ones from me; the darkness is my closest friend.”

The Nine Cemetery Contemplations– A meditation taught by Buddha, where practitioners visualise the human body in various stages of decay.

Pie Jesu – A traditional addition to the Requiem mass translated as “O sweet Lord Jesus, grant them rest; grant them everlasting rest.”

A Woman Unknown – Excerpts from a 1760 Westminster inquest, describing the body of a woman found in the Thames near London Bridge.

In Paradisum – the traditional ending to the Requiem Mass, describing angels leading the departed into paradise.