There was a bone house at Harling Point in Victoria, Canada in 1903, where the remains of deceased Chinese immigrants were cleaned and prepared for burial. After being buried for seven years, the remains of early Chinese immigrants were re-excavated, cleaned and dried, wrapped in a white cloth and shipped back to their hometown in China for burial. This tradition was practiced by Chinese immigrants in Canada until 1937, when Sino-Japanese war sparked in China.
Following the closure of this bone house, around 900 stored remains were buried at a cemetery, which replaced the bone house. Their tombstones face towards the Pacific, their homeland on the other end of the ocean.
Reverence for ancestors buried to rest.
“A Bone House,” a mixed-media installation in “Beyond Image: Laboratory of Light,” at Hubei Museum of Art, Wuhan, China, 2015-2016
Photos included in the installation