Clément – A second wind for the Wind School

After fifteen years of stunning success, the site that makes children dream takes a new turn. At this location, the museography/scenography is currently being scrutinized like no other.

A country that dreams is a country that lives. This is the motto of the inhabitants of Saint-Clément, in the Hautes Boutières. This is also the raison d’être of the School of the Wind. On this indefinable site, undoubtedly unique in France, science and imagination are one. The museography, the many activities, the different workshops usually spread over several months of the year, make it an atypical place whose success has never diminished year after year, since its opening in 2007. fun, you learn, you experiment with your friends, classmates and family, with undisguised joy. We discover there the existence of curious ancestors, the People of the Wind, also called “Volateurs” who would have found a way to fly away centuries ago. A miracle ? Many Boutiérois swear it’s not a legend…

A legend to endure

This legend, the School of the Wind, wants to make it last. But after fifteen years in which the site managers competed in creativity to offer the general public the most original animations, the structure will be given a new impetus in 2022. A second wind, so to speak. And for the first time, it had to close its doors between the fall of 2021 and the spring, the time it took to carry out a total overhaul of the property.

In fact, we have been thinking about renovating it since 2019 » admits Mathilde Cognet, director of the École du vent since 2012. « As with any change, of course we take a risk, but we needed to reinvigorate a dynamic before the site fell into disuse. Today is the right time

Three years of reflection

Three years of reflection were therefore necessary, especially to give up certain creations, to come up with new ones, also to pick up the recipes that work. Do not panic ! The École du vent remains where it is, in the village of Saint-Clément, in the heart of the old farmhouse with exposed stones that has housed it since the beginning. It will always be open to the surrounding nature, open to the four winds! Under no circumstances should renovation rhyme with destruction. On the contrary, the soul of this place of discovery remains. “We realized that the theme of the wind is almost inexhaustible, that we can lower it to infinity”, says Mathilde Cognet. † Things will just evolve. The people of the wind of Saint-Clément will be open to the other peoples of the wind and thus even to the wind cultures of the whole world. The reflection will be more advanced on how to use this natural power, how we live with it, how we protect ourselves from it, how living beings use it

“Wind, flight, life”

A new museography/scenography is currently installed. It takes the common thread of apprentice thieves invented by the designers of the place: “wind, flight, life”. When the work is finished, the visit will, as usual, leave a great deal to interactivity: the visitor will be an actor himself. † Of course it will be very playful, we will put a lot of lightness in it, but at the same time everything will be done to gain height, to bring us back to our human condition, our living place in the middle of nature. the world, of nature. , the wind reveals Mathilde Cognet, who was there like no other when this school was born. † For example, bridges are built between the Ardéchois chiseled by the wind and the Iranians who make windpieces.

Official reopening in June 2022

But otherwise, be quiet! It’s almost a secret… There is a certain mystery in the boutieroise farm, as workers have been working since May 3 to redevelop the property into four different spaces. The design phase of the various modules of the scenography was completed a few days ago with the partner craftsmen, now place for the installation in the heart of the barn that houses everything. Adjustments, planing… The work is not lacking and will undoubtedly be spread over the month of May and part of June.

How is the museography/scenography composed? In the first room, the visitor will discover the wind. In the second it is explained to him how it is formed, in the third how one flies away and in the fourth how one uses it. At the entrance, the hot air balloon basket will always be there to welcome families. Artists, mechanics, graphic designers, developers (especially for flight simulations) were called upon for this renovation. In total, just over thirty people are on site for the home game: an official reopening in June.

The workshops of the Wind School have now resumed, without the participants having access to the interior of the barn for the time being. We still have a lot of fun making the famous kites, but the programmers for the 2022 season, never running out of ideas, have also planned many new workshops and some nice surprises… Good luck!

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