SELK'NAM MEMORIAL ROUTE
Universidad del Desarrollo
The project was born from an investigation into the Selk'nam people (indigenous people from Tierra del Fuego in southern Chile) and how this ethnic group was exterminated by the owners of the Magellan estates.
The architectural concept corresponds with the study of the traces and how they configure spatial relationships in the land. Through this mantra, the natural and artificial traces of the Tierra del Fuego are studied, and in parallel the Selk'nam body make-up is studied. In this way we start to work with the line (trace) and the point (milestone) to be able to grant a measure to this land in its vastness. The case corresponds to a memorial route, which rescues the only recognizable trace of the Selk'nam origins (east-west line), and within it there are eight memorials that refer to the spirits of the ‘Hain’ ritual.
Due to climatic issues and demographic settlements, Porvenir is the most favourable commune for the development of this project. In addition, it is the area with the highest Selk'nam archaeological load on the whole island. Due to this, it is proposed that the route crosses from west to east, joining the two most important bays of the island: Bahía Inútil and Bahía San Sebastián, which are two significant points in the history of this town.
The programme is a refuge provided only with the minimum for survival. All have a wind-protected area (rest area), a ‘meeting’ area with a fire pit, and a ‘programmatic morphological’ element linked to the spirit to which the refuge refers. Because each memorial is related to different spirits, these three factors are developed in different ways.