Dying with plants.
Dyeing with plants.

By Harm Coordes

Starting to create, imagine the death.

With everything we do, we should find a good beginning
and a good end.

To think holistic, does this not only mean to include everything horizontal, but also everything vertical, to not only keep the things in mind, but also the time? Within the circle of live, within the seasons, things are born, are growing,
are culminating, are decaying, are dying.

Appreciate everything that is here now. Feel the energy that was needed to produce/make it. Feel the ancestors that made this possible, who created this place. They probably had the best intentions.

“Dying presupposes that life is specifically closed. If life is deprived of any possibility of closure, it is ended at an untimely moment (at a non- time).” (1)

For philosopher Byung-Chul Han, western societies have forgotten how to come to an end, how to create moments of closure. We are starting over and over again, creating ever new things and situations, but never arrive. What follows is an endless addition of unconnected parts, an atomisation of time, of ourselves. (2)

Take a stroll through the surrounding. Find a power object. Spend five minutes with the power object. Discard everything superfluous. And all memories. Experience it. Build an Altar aesthetically. Rearrange it every day. Bring the object back in the end.

“The atomisation of life goes hand in hand with an atomisation of identity. All we have is our self, our little ego. We are subject to a radical loss of space and time, even of world, of being-with. Poverty of world is a phenomenon of dischronicity. It reduces the human being to a tiny body that is kept healthy at all costs. Otherwise, what would we have? The health of one’s fragile body is a substitute for world and God. Nothing outlasts death. Thus, dying is particularly difficult today. And we age, without becoming old.“ (3)

Performing rituals or reiterating ceremonies of ending, of re-connection, of gratefulness and of letting go, to me, are vital breaks in this dischronicity. They are moments of deep breath, and of inspiring connections with human and non- human others. They are creating a rhythm, an oscilliation. Gratefulness is a constitution of an ending, because in gratefulness, we can look back on a thing and appreciate it. It has been done, and we can let it go. It is how we give the things their colour.

Every creature has a first person perspective. We are forming a mycelium.  

Taking these breaks, stopping for a moment, finding and ending, are necessary steps for transformation, without them, we are running the risk of loosing track.

My mushroom self. Connecting with the sky



Building relationships, finding a place, finding a we, constitutes a common thing, it is a decision. A decision is an ending to a process. It should be appreciated.


We started our transformation process individually, but we are not in it alone. We are only a part of a bigger whole, and it is beautiful to be with you.


  1. Author´s translation from: Han, Byung-Chul, Vom Verschwinden der Rituale, Ullstein, 2019, p. 37
  2. Cf. Han, Byung-Chul, Vom Verschwinden der Rituale, Ullstein, 2019, p. 37
  3. Han, Byung-Chul, The Scent of time, polity press, 2019, p. vii

dischronicity, consummation, circularity, dying, healing

About the author
Harm Coordes Since graduating from University of the Arts Bremen (2013), I have been working as a freelance fashion and costume designer, scenographer and artist for theatres, artists and musicians in Bremen and Berlin as well as realizing theatre pieces with youths and school children. In 2014, I joined the theatre collective "Thermoboy FK” that is dealing with questioning male role models, a performance-oriented society and living together as a group. Since 2015, I am working as a lecturer in experimental fashion at University of Applied Sciences Berlin and University of the Arts Bremen, where I am currently doing an artistic PhD (in collaboration with Rijksuniversiteit Groningen). Based on case studies in the fashion and performance project "Church of the Hand“, it is researching how individual meaning can be linked to fashion and how this can lead to more sustainable consumer behaviour.