Last month, the research proposed in the Biennale was aimed at a project for a health district in Doha, the capital of Qatar.
And during these two years, de Graaf reflected on the drastically changed boundary conditions that led him to question the need to imagine a new form of ‘sanatorium’. After the giant advances in biomedical engineering – which have made it possible to 3D print organs and tissues – is it possible, the Dutch curator wondered, to imagine building an entire hospital with 3D technology? And is it possible to use waste as a constructive resource? Is it possible to imagine an ‘open form’ for the hospital that is responsive to change?
The research conducted over the past two years has been transformed into an interesting installation. In a futuristic hospital room, with beds and dividing curtains, you can watch the projection of the film designed together with a large team that has been questioning the role healthcare institutions will play in the new world.
On 18 October 2021, together with Buro Happold, OMA finalised the research hypotheses presented in Venice for the Doha Health District. Imagined for the huge suburban area – 1.3 million square metres – of the Qatari capital, the large hospital complex is developed on a modular grid that through prefabrication and automation adapts and reacts to the rapid changes in science and medicine.
The project includes a two-floor structure housing a university hospital, a women’s hospital, a children’s hospital and a diagnostic centre. The hospital wards are all on the ground floor and enjoy contiguity with patios and gardens. A high-tech farm provides food and medicinal plants. The various modular cross-shaped units are prefabricated, 3D printed, and can be reconfigured and expanded with minimal process changes.