The University of Western Australia’s Bilya Marlee designed by Kerry Hill Architects has been purpose-built to house a School of Indigenous Studies. It is also home to the university’s Centre for Aboriginal Medical and Dental Health and the POCHE Centre for Indigenous Health.
Through a series of projects in the arid environment of Western Australia, predominantly built for Aboriginal communities, Kaunitz and Yeung Architecture has proposed a different approach to working with the beautiful, yet harsh, desert environment. Designing with, not for, remote Aboriginal communities, Kaunitz and Yeung are changing the narrative of remote regional architecture – creating a new vernacular for Australian desert architecture.
A participatory approach to architecture has the capacity to foster community and the role of the architect can be central to this process.
Being engaged in a community requires certain conditions to be present, and often requires a catalyst of sorts.
Personal connections to the south coast, coupled with an overwhelming desire to help where possible, Takt studio has been involved in a number of community recovery projects.
“It’s a luxury to have land space taking up different building functions”, and notes BVN principal architect Ali Bounds “no longer prudent to simply have workplaces or schools that operate between certain hours leaving building stock empty outside of these programmed times.”
When we think about community today in our local NSW context, our varied lived experience can obscure its common meaning. This is exacerbated by our highly privatised built environment, developed by European colonisation through the physical demarcation and division of land, and systematic allocation of individual property rights. Our context seen through this lens, holds more affinity with the condition of immunity, understood as exemption from obligation to share (land) with others.
While preparing the works of architect Paul Pholeros for archiving in the State Library of New South Wales, a lecture outline for architecture students in Papua New Guinea, circa 1995, was unearthed.
Communities are dealing with the impact of the loss of their landscape. Solastalgia is a modern term used to describe the distress some people experience that is caused by changes to the environment, both built and natural, more often than not brought on by climate change.
Samantha Rich and Danièle Hromek on First Nations women working in spatial disciplines.