permanence / mobility / permanence
from the mobility of a clinic to the permanence of care.
Today, Aids decimates entire populations throughout all of Africa. The mission of this mobile clinic is to bring medical services to the isolated villages of Sub-Saharan Africa where no aid yet arrives. Among the affected, this malady renders taboo the acceptance of medical aid, in some cases to the point of rejection. To fulfill its function, the clinic must first be accepted by the local population. We propose to involve the local inhabitants as actors in this project before the first treatment begins. And in this spirit, we propose that the village contribute its very soil to the process of creation.
It's here where the exchange between an African village and a medical team begins, each receiving from the other a commitment before the more intimate, human processes of healing and education begin.
We thus propose a clinic in two distinct parts:
One permanent (earthen granaries)
One mobile (sterile pods and textile skins)
The permanent component is composed of one or two granaries constructed in local material, generally earth- form, and is built by the local inhabitants several weeks before the arrival of the clinic. Through this, we begin the gradual process of integration into the life of the village.
The mobile component arrives by small truck with the medical team. It is lightweight and takes up little space. The primary elements, on the interior, are sterile pods in flexible synthetics which hang from metallic poles and the existing granaries, thus making their installation quick and efficient.
They are designed to be easily adaptable to granaries of varying forms and materials, regular and irregular, according to the standard local craft. Exterior to these sterile pods, a veil of local African textile gives protection from the sun and presents a familiar face to the village. From the exterior, this superposition of textiles through multiple levels of transparency allows the discovery of the center's interior life. It is in the approach that we discover progressively the spaces of education, consultation and care, revealed through a filtered and penetrating light.
From afar, it is a short disturbance on the horizon, a tense textile which envelopes the form of the landscape, like the camouflage of a space that was always there.
When the clinic leaves the village, the earthen granaries remain. They will be used for the storage of medicine and to assure a place of permanent contact for the care and information of local inhabitants.
They mark the passage of the clinic, an imprint upon the landscape, a promise of return.
The day when the clinic will return, the granaries will be there, assuring the continuity of care.