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Critic Bryony Roberts
Program Columbia GSAPP — MSAAD '23
Studio Reproductive Justice Studio
Site 514 E Amite St, Jackson, MS 39201
Following the Supreme Court’s 2022 decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, the plaintiff—the Jackson Women’s Health Organization—closed its doors. Their former home, the Pink House, was sold. Mississippians were left without access to legal abortions, and many also lack access to basic reproductive and sexual health services, resulting in poor health outcomes with regards to reproductive, sexual, and maternal health. The Purple Houses is a new healthcare facility and advocacy center in Jackson, Mississippi that provides the full-spectrum of reproductive and sexual health care services.
The design of the Purple Houses is driven by 2 key questions. First, how can reproductive healthcare facilities counter political opposition? The site planning seeks to counter political opposition, provide security for care seekers, and provide vibrant public spaces. The main building is surrounded by a perimeter wall—pulled back from the property line to provide public spaces at the site’s periphery.
Second, how can clinical spaces create a sense of comfort, safety, and vitality for patients? Conventional clinical spaces are sterile, bland, and hyper-rational. The Purple Houses exhibits a new model for spaces of care which incorporates domestic forms, soft colors and textures, and curvy quirks to invoke a sense of coziness and whimsy for patients.
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