Annabelle Roper - Research Booklet - Bower Studio 2020

Page 1

Bower Studio














Social & Historical Context











Alcohol & Drinking

8 COVID 19

Libanangu Community Centre 1.2 Design



1.3 Construction


1.1 Consultation





Warnkurr Social Club

















3.3 Final Design



Warnkurr Social Club

3.1 Consultation


3.2 Design Development


2.1 Design



Karungkarni Arts and Culture Centre

2.2 Consultation

Precedents Analysis





This year 2020 Emma and I were invited back to Bower Studio to be mentors for the new group of students. In February 2019 we visited Kalkaringi for the first time to build two shade structures in the park. When we returned to Melbourne we designed different designs for housing based on what we learned when we had visited. Last year I wrote my first Bower Studio journal booklet, this booklet is part 2 to that edition. It has been really interesting to delve into new research and resources for this booklet and design. Upon reflection in addition to ground work context research my last journal’s research was very targeted to housing in remote Aboriginal communities. With a new design the research in this book delves into a different topic that of drinking and social clubs in remote aboriginal communities in the Northern Territory. Before Covid19 however I had planned on exploring a design for on county learning. Since we were not able to visit Kalkaringi I have now designed the planned extension of the Warnkurr Social Club to include a family area for 6


people not drinking. Some of my early research had been centred on stories of children and adolescents and their experience of growing up. As you will find in my reflections on the research is that these sources are still relevant. I feel that drinking and all the resulting rules and regulations and opinions about drinking is related to social situations. This research shows through documentaries how these kids have experienced their lives and gives you insight into how people interact with them and as such you understand some of the underlying social context within which drinking then takes place. Consultations with RR and Phil over zoom helped us understand the existing club, how it is run and the dreams for the new club. This included how the club is run by the local council to effect that the locals feel it in parts are specifically designed to shame them. Through misunderstanding or intention this cannot happen in our designs. In Melbourne, pubs and restaurants are places where you go to celebrate and relax, they are designed as attractive comfortable places. It is not a place with tall barbed wire topped

fences encircling it like in remote indigenous communities. Unlike in aboriginal communities in the Northern Territory your kids or under age companions can enter the club and eat fries while you have a beer or wine. Through this design we cannot change the laws that dictate the running of social clubs but I hope to change the experience

of the Warnkurr social club to be an inclusive and uniting part of the community. The rest of this journal details the research, consultations and design work I went through to arrive at my design. 7

COVID19 PANDEMIC Unfortunately this year decided to throw a curve ball at the world, Covid19 . Due to the dangers of Covid19 we are unable to visit Kalkaringi and build the shade structures and landscaped area. From all that we learned last year studying and working in Kalkaringi the dense living conditions and limited medical support due t the remoteness it is very immoral and unwise to possibly bring the virus into Kalkaringi. The threat of the virus has become so great that classes cannot be run in person. It was a hard hit for us in Bower studio. Bower studio is based on in person learning, hands on experience and learning by doing and observing. It is tough to get the same sense of community and bonding that we had last year. It is difficult to have group meetings of an informal nature where we can work on tasks collaboratively. Isolated in our homes it is hard to connect to each other and the project. I can only begin to imagine how the other students who have never been to Kalkaringi are feeling. I myself am feeling untethered slightly. 8


However everyone that has signed up for Bower has remained as we all know the positive work that we are doing. There is purpose to our work in Bower that gives us motivation to keep working when we feel lost in isolation. Unlike most other studios the designs the we are working on are beneficial to Kalkaringi. These are projects that the community is working hard towards realising. I also know from experience how important our study is into the topics surrounding aboriginal Australians. Since I finished Bower studio last year I have had many opportunities to tell my experience in Kalkaringi and the information I gained through research. These opportunities have led to my knowledgeable input in debates on these topics with friends and family. I have been able to change peoples opinions to be more open and I only hope that the people I talk to pass it on. Here in Melbourne it is so easy to be ignorant on issues of remote aboriginal Australians. videos/2320845554884492/ UzpfSTIxMDQxMDA1NTgyNjg4MjoxNDE1NjEyNTQ4NjM5OTU0/



This booklet records all the information I have been learning or reflecting on throughout the semester that I feel is relevant to my final design. Through this semester we worked on three different projects throughout the studio. All of the information learned in each subsequent project is relevant to the final design. Through consultations and presentation of ideas to the community we gain a better idea of the communities needs and preferences. We also gain a better understanding of how best to communicate ideas to our clients not just to fellow architecture students as we do in class. Designing for both the Libanangu Culture centre 10


and the Karungkarni Arts and Culture Centre we got feedback and a better understanding of the kind of construction that will work in Kalkaringi and how it can be constructed ranging from prefabricating and shipping up large steel columns to designing robust furniture on site. We also got expereince in consutlation with the community and how to best understand the needs and goals of the community for each project. Each experience we had with the projects added to our knowledge of the community and aided in the development of my design.





The Gurindji people of Kalkaringi have every right to be proud that they are part of the cause of Aboriginal Land Rights. Their ancestor Vincent Lingiari led 200 people in a protest for the working and land rights of the Aboriginal people. The Wave Hill cattle station occupied their land turning it into profit and destroying the natural ecosystem in one fell swoop. The Aboriginal people were employed to work on the station, paid in rations of food, very simple forms of accommodation that didn’t include floors and were given second hand clothes from the white workers. The Gurindji people were exhausted and fed up with being unpaid. Their white co-workers were paid in money. Lingiari went to the station owners and requested that the Aboriginal people be paid a fraction of the white people. But they were denied. They left in the night and walked towards Daguragu. The walk was dangerous, they

feared being gunned down as they walked like so many massacres before then. The cattle station tried to bribe them with houses that had concrete slabs rather than bare earth but to no success. The Strike lasted 10 years in which the Gurindji people gained a large supporting. People would drive food and supplies from Darwin. Legal aid was provided pro bono from Melbourne. And Vincent Lingiari Went to Sydney to have his voice heard. In the end Prime Minister Gough Whitlam ceremoniously poured the Gurindji dirt into the hands of Lingiari signifying the return of the land. Since then the Gurindji people have strived to create a prosperous community for themselves and their families. Beginning with the Gurindji Aboriginal Corporation who have worked hard to get to this point where they can purchase the Wurnkurr social club back from the council.



Gurindji Aboriginal Corporation in 2014 became the Prescribed Body Corporate for the Native Title over Kalkaringi. Their functions are to: • hold, protect and manage determined native title in accordance with the objectives of Kalkaringi Traditional Owners, and; • ensure certainty for governments and other parties interested in accessing or regulating native title land and waters by providing a legal entity to manage and conduct the affairs of Traditional Owners. They are involved in many aspects of the community such as improving housing in the community, improving community facilities, supporting families, youth and elderly, and preserving the local culture. Gurindji Corp currently runs the local store and 14


the construction in Kalkaringi. The projects that Bower studio have completed with Gurindji Corp have proven to government that Gurindji Corp are capable of undertaking large value projects. This has meant that larger project contracts are awarded to the construction team enabling local people to be paid to build their own houses in their community. It has also meant that the proposal to purchase the old health clinic previously owned by the council was approved with the plans Gurindji Corp have for developing it into the community centre. Gurindji Corp enterprise now have their sights set on three new promising projects: the purchase and extension of the social club, the construction of a family centre and the construction of a culture centre. Gurindji Corp have been key to the success in Kalkaringi constantly working towards the long term goals of the community and remembering to celebrate along the way with the Freedom Day Festival.


Freedom Day Festival brings people together to celebrate Aboriginal Land Rights. It is held in Kalkaringi on Gurindji land commemorating the battle for their land rights that ended with Gough Whitlam famously pouring sand into the hands of Vincent Lingiari. It is a three day long festival that brings many people to the town to join in a parade and share the Walk-off story. Interstate visitors, politicians, media representative, union leaders and musicians all join in the celebration. It is a chance to celebrate not only the success of the past, but the continued progress that is evident in Kalkaringi. It is also a time for all people in the community to be proud and valued. It is the busiest time in Kalkaringi and many projects are completed and organised to be ready to host the numerous visitors. 15

1.0 Libanangu Community Centre




The project we planned to construct was back in Kalkaringi to take part in revamping the Old Clinic beside the shop into the new Libanangu Centre. Our part in the project was decided in a 4 day consultation on site with the community, Gurindji Corp and the Traditional Owners. Before we flew up to the NT we had ideas and a sketch design for what we could contribute. The Old Clinic was very run down and looking exceptionally shabby and average. To make it into the new community centre we would need to tie it into the story that had begun to be told in the Walk Off pavilions. The Old Clinic was 18


also very exposed. There were a few trees to the south of the building but exposed on the east and north. David came up with a shade structure design that would continue the story told in the Walk Off pavilions and launch it into the prospective future. We engaged the engineers Jorja and Rachel from ARUP and began to get initial calculations on if it can be constructed and what the restrictions would be. So when we got on the flight we had with us plans, engineering advice and materials to make a model for the consultation meetings.

Emma sitting on north verandah looking towards art centre and walk off pavilion



It was really interesting seeing Kalkaringi in the wet season especially since last time we were there it was extremely dry after not receiving a wet season. I did not expect the road to be closed because of the rain however when we arrived in Top Springs. We found out that we could possibly be stranded by the water level in the river crossings. It was impressive to see the flow of water so strong but also equally frightening, these rivers have claimed many lives.



Reflections It was educational to see the water levels and the intensity of rain that occurs. It will help inform my design coming from my personal experience as well as research into it. It was great to see the social opportunities it created with children swimming in the water and people fishing. I also observed that for the few days that we were staying, there was no rain in Kalkaringi. The storms were happening in the surrounding areas and the water then flowed down the rivers to Kalkaringi.



The site visit was essential in informing the design. We identified many things that we could not find through the satellite images or previous years photos of the area. We realised after spending time on site that the best and most visible side of the building is the east side that faces the art centre. This would mean that rearranging the design of the shade structures and landscaping to have the main entrance from the east and art centre side. This was advantageous as we also discovered that the site has a turning circle driveway to the north side that we decided should stay. This meant that rather than having more shade structures to the north we have moved them to the east side, the entrance and the most visible side. At the visit on site we were also meeting with Double R, Quitaysha, Phil and Michael to discuss 22


the planning and use of the rooms within the building. Originally it was thought that the floor plan would need major changes. However on-site we discussed the different uses of each room and realised that we had all the rooms we needed. The process for this on-site consultation took a long time. It involved a lot of listening and allowing people to think. We were all processing and making decisions together brainstorming the possibilities. It was important to listen to everyone’s different priorities and concerns. There are many different uses proposed for this building and many different stakeholders. It was important to balance all the different requirements equally.

north verandah looking towards art centre and walk off pavilion


We also observed the condition of the building on the site visit. We were thorough in our search of all the corners of the building. We looked for signs of default with rust or physical damage. We also looked at the physical construction of the building, what materials and components were used and their sizes so that we could patch parts and match materials where needed. In the areas on the verandah there was significant rust damage. We needed to document and plan for the repair and reinforcing of the damaged areas. We took note of the profiling of the cladding as it was not a common profile and we may need to 24


patch areas. We also measured the height of the verandah from the natural ground level in order to plan the design of the steps we will construct. On site we discussed the impact of the power lines on the construction and design as they are bordering two sides of the site and are relatively low. We noticed a young tree that will once fully grown will need to be trimmed to avoid hitting the power lines.

east elevation


north elevation and existing entry



New Doors in existing stripped back facade


David Obrien

On site we photographed the physical model of the shade structure and we were able to get a clearer picture of what the shade would look like on site. We took multiple photos of the structure at different angles to simulate the sun coming from different angles. We were really pleased with the effect of the shadows. There was ample shadow for multiple angles and interesting shadows cast from the perforations. 28


The model was a really important visual aid to get our idea across clearly and to test out many different conditions. The photos of the shade structure in-front of the old building were shown to Phil was amazed at how it looked. Seeing this image he could visualise the end result a lot clearer.

David Obrien

David Obrien



This meeting was a very important step to gauge the community and especially the traditional owners opinions and thoughts. The meeting was a formal meeting held in the Gurindji Corp offices. We presented the models of the shade structures and site to a meeting with traditional owners Roslyn Frith and Rob Roy, Keteisha, Meena, Phil (CEO of Gurindji Corp), Michael (Gurindji Corp manager of construction and maintenance) and other community members and construction team members and listened to their feedback. This meeting gave us an opportunity to not only present our new ideas to the community leaders and incorporate their opinions and approval, but it was also a chance to reiterate the story of the considered design of the Wave Hill Walk-Off Pavilions and its relationship with this project. 30


Reflection and Applications It was interesting watching the meeting run, as it was not like a meeting I had been to before. Unlike a meeting where everyone is speaking over each other to offer ideas and opinions, the space was filled with a lot of silence and waiting respectfully for people to share their opinions. You could clearly see the hierarchy in the room by who spoke and who waited to listen to ideas. It was also interesting to see how acceptance and approval of ideas are not expressed explicitly and exuberantly it is more subtle and you really need to be listening and observing to get an answer.



We also visited the Karungkarni Arts Centre where we showed Penny, Rosemary, Richard, Rachel, and Narelle the two models and talked about the plans for the Community Hub. Everyone at the meeting was happy that the old building was getting re-purposed and they were excited to have a new opportunity to display their community values. The Old Clinic represented a place where unpleasant memories occurred and they were glad its becoming something new and hopeful. The group were very excited by the opportunity to have a projector showing photos of their community and artworks. 32


It was important the Phil was there to help us talk to the community, as he is a familiar face it is much easier to talk to him. He also knows their concerns and values and can point out the areas of interest to them. It was important that we show these models to as many people as possible to get the word out and inform as many people in the community as possible of what is happening. This way no-one is surprised and everyone has an opportunity to express their thoughts. David Obrien



On one of the afternoons we went for a drive to explore a little bit and see the landscape in the wet season. We came across Leah at the river between Kalkaringi and Daguragu. She had taken her grandchildren and nephews and nieces for a swim on the hot day. Leah agreed to come into the art centre the next day to look at the models of the shade structure. When Leah saw the models she liked the idea 34


of them. Her two main concerns were that the steel was going to be very hot in the sun, on days that it gets to 40°c. Her second concern was that the design was too straight and man made. The design needed more organic shapes such as boulders in the landscaping for people to sit on. This was an important comment, that our design should include more nature and organic shapes and patterns.



At the club each night people go to chill out have a few laughs and just chat things out. We went to the club each night we were there to talk to people in the community. Emma and I had a chat to Rosie and Cassandra. We talked about the basketball and how the competitions were going both the children’s basketball and the women’s events. We also spoke about the upcoming trip that was planned to America with the language expert, and community members including Cassandra, that helped develop Gurindji sign language. We also learned that one of the children in the community is going to Melbourne Indigenous Transition School just up the road from my house. It is a really good school and the community in Richmond loves having them around, Con the local milk bar owner says good morning to them on their way to school each day.



We also spoke to Phil and RR about the club and what function it used to have in the community. Because currently it has pulled back on the extra curricular activities and just serves beer and food. RR said there used to be karaoke, trivia, control of the playlist, and bands playing. But then the equipment got stolen or broken and it was too hard to manage. We also spoke about the trouble they have had with the security staff showing up on time and whether the managers should drive to pick staff up or if that is not their responsibility. Reflection and Applications The Social Club is an important part of the culture in Kalkaringi for making social bonds and memories. There is a lot of conversations that occur in the club that benefit the community.




COUNCIL APPLICATION After all the meetings and site visits we needed to make changes to the drawings submitted to council these accompanied the application to purchase and renovate the existing council owned old health clinic building. The plans needed to be changed to show the external landscaping and shade structures. We also needed to change the internal floor plan to show the changes we made in discussions on site. Comparing the original floor plans and adjusted floor plans for the new community centre, you can clearly see how the design has been simplified, using the existing frame work. Onsite the discussions revealed that the group had reviewed the plans and decided that it was not necessary to try and fit so much into one little building. For example the living quarters are unnecessary as more houses can be built and incorporating them into the community centre plans isn’t considering the long term goals of 40


the building. Another key change is removing the eight community provider offices for services such as medicare that need temporary offices. It was discussed that the children and family services rooms are going to be a temporary use as there are plans to set up a fully functioning family centre, but they will be useful as offices until it is built. After the family centre is built however the offices can be used exclusively as the community provider offices. Reflection and Applications This process revealed to me how difficult it can be to get certain grants or submit an application to the government. There are many hoops to jump through and necessary requirements. It is really helpful that Phil and Gurindji Corp are so experienced in this process as it could be very alienating and overwhelming. I would understand why in some circumstances viable applications are not made as it is just too much.

landscaped garden

staff parking









Kalkaringi Community Centre 41

ORIGINAL PLANS So many community provider offices were unnecessary

The living quarters were also decided unncessary as more homes could be built






19 JULY 2019





Kalkaringi Community Centre


Private wing, not for visitors karungkarni projector of

culture desk with

images or wall of

visitor guides


Staff training

temporary use

art centre courses

until family centre is built.

agm meetings

Then it

becomes community provider offices

darker room

views to outside

= no

screen glare TITLE:








Kalkaringi Community Centre 43












The design of the steel for the shade structures was a unique task as it required a lot of resistance however needed to be able to be constructed on site by students. It was decided that for accuracy, strength and design the main z columns needed to be prefabricated with welded joints. These could be done and packed in the shipping container to head up to site. The welded joints were ideal for the design as they are a unique and striking feature of the design. The main cause of load to the structure is wind load pushing the structure to fall over. The amount of load had to be considered for a variety of reasons, first being the size of the columns. The columns had different loads depending on where they were in the structure. The end 50


columns take roughly half the load of those in the centre and as such can be made of lighter steel. The centre columns however needed to resist more load because of a greater tributary width. The concern was about how heavy could the columns be before it was too much to lift as unlike in urban constructions, Kalkaringi does not have any cranes to lift the steel. This limited how spaced the columns could be as greater distance equals greater load. It was decided that the columns could have a second EA post fixed to the columns. This meant that extra work would need to be done to the added EA to get it to fit flush.

Section Sizes 65x8EA or 75x6EA A



150x12EA with 125x12EA welded to the inside of columns on site 2.6m 2.0m 3.2m

Note: sizes are based on the column footings being 400mm above the ground level (i.e. maximum height of posts above footing to be 3.6m).

2.5m 2.5m

Job Title

Job No.

Sketch TitleStudio 2020 Bower

Sketch Title

Job TitleSection Sizes and Pad Footing Sizes Steel Sketch Job No.No.

Rev. Sketch No.





By Made by

Date Date






51 Chd.

The second concern for the structure was the perforated steel panels and how open they would be and how they are fixed. The greater the solidity of the perforated sheets the greater the wind load they will transfer to the structure. So we had to decide the rough amount of panels per structure there would be and the diameters of the perforations in the steel. The way the perforated sheets were fixed to the columns also made a difference to the engineering. If the sheets were directly fixed to the columns the moment at each of the connections would be great. However our design has the panels fitted between two EA 52


braces. This helps distribute the load to make the moment at each connection less. At the end of each of the perforated metal sheets a pre-fabricated length of EA will be fixed to finish off the ‘bed frame’ design. For design preferences and for strength the EA brace pieces will be welded to each of the z columns in two places and not fixed with tabs and bolts. This will take more time on site but will result in a neater design finish.

with ea bracing load split to four points

at the end of each perforate metal sheet a prefabricated ea piece will be fixed to finish off the ‘bed frame’

initial load path secondary load path

The EA braces will be welded to the z columns at two points per column per ea.

This will be tight at some of the welds to get the equipment in

without ea bracing load split to two points



The main consideration for the concrete was the limitation of manual labour and the short construction time. Because the shade structure had only one connection to the earth it acts as a big cantilever. To counter the forces on the shade structure a large amount of concrete is needed to weigh it down approximately 2 tonnes per column. To hand mix all of that concrete would be too much. In addition the concrete would need to cure fully for 28 days before the column was fixed to it. It was decided that we could get pre-cast concrete pads, but that also brought its own considerations. This included how are we going to move them, is the equipment in Kalkaringi able to pick them up? How will we place the footings in the perfect spot first time and at the 54


perfect level? ARUP informed us that the pads need to be set down into the earth by 200-300mm. Which suited our plans for having them as seating elements. The concrete pads have pre-cast threaded bolts as it was discussed it is the easiest method to fix the column on site. Individually each pre-cast threaded bolt is stronger than a post fixed chem set or anchor bolt and as such we need less of them to resist the required moment. To solve the level issue we discussed ways that the level can be accounted for in the connection with the steel column. The method that was chosen was to have packers under the steel and then fill the space with grout.

400 mm 300 mm

700 mm

300 mm

700 mm

1,500 mm

1,500 mm

400 mm

850 mm

1,150 mm

Central Columns 1500x1150x700

Edge Columns 1500x850x700

A Note: Pad footings to be embedded 300mm into the ground (i.e. top of footings is 400mm above ground and the maximum height of columns above pad footings is 3.6m)

Note: Columns to be placed centrally to pad footings.

Pad Footings - Plan

Pad Footings - Elevation


N16-200 bars bottom

N16-200 bars bottom

300 mm



Refer to schedule for basep 400x300x25thk baseplate

180 mm

Couplers 2-R10 Ties (hot dip galvanised)

Bolt450 Length

N16-200 bars top & bottom

N16-200 bars top & bottom

25 grout or 25 non-shrink non-shrink grout. packer plates to suit

Edge Columns

Section A

Holding bolts 'N' 4-M20 8.8/S Holding down down bolts grade 4.6/ (hot (hot dip dip galvanised). galvanised). Refer to sch

12 'AT'

Central Columns

280 mm


Edge Columns 1500x850x700

400 mm

Central Columns 1500x1150x700

70 'AW'

Job Title

Job No.

Sketch TitleStudio 2020 Bower

Pad Footing Reinforcement

Sketch Title

Typical Baseplate Detail A

Job TitleSection Sizes and Pad Footing Sizes Steel


Sketch Job No.No.

Rev. Sketch No.





By Made by

Date Date






55 Chd.


The shop drawings needed to be drawn up to send to the fabricators so that they could construct the columns with the correct details. The key part was to get the drawings to be clear and able to be constructed. This meant I had to pay attention to how to dimension the lengths of steel and the angles of the joints. I learnt that for the holes for the connections the dimensioning should be to centre lines as they are drilled or punched out the equipment will be lined up to the centre line.



Reflection and Applications Experiencing the development of the engineering of the shade structures displayed to me how much has to be thought through during the design process. This is even more important because the site is in remote Australia where there is limited supplies and long delivery times. Things to consider include how to get to Kalkaringi and how to get all the materials and equipment there as well, who will build the structure, how strong are they and what is their knowledge of construction, what is the weather like and the extremes of winds and rain. These are all extra considerations that need to be considered on top of the standard considerations for an engineering design. AR







400 140













150x150x12MM EA FRAME










73° 25



PLAN 1:10

2 1


Bower Studio | Melbourne School of Design University of Melbourne Victoria Australia 3010 Dr David O'Brien 03 8344 8761 |


CLIENT Gurindji Aboriginal Corporation Buntine Highway Kalkaringi Northern Territory Australia 0852 Phil Smith 0406 224 866




DATE: 20/2/20 ISSUE -A

57 A100

PAINT AND COLOUR DESIGN The exterior of the existing building is very weathered. The multiple adjustments that were made to the building and its services in the past have all left their mark. There are patches in the profiled metal cladding where old air conditioners were removed. There are patches of different coloured paint from where a repaint job didn’t paint behind an aircon unit. There are multiple holes across the facade. Overall the building needs a facelift if it to be the new Libanangu Community Centre. The idea was for it to be the new modern design representing the community’s future. It needed to incorporate local art work. It is also desired by the community to be bright and bold to stand out from the other buildings in the community. The idea being that the building wasn’t to look like a plain administration building.



The considerations for the design however pertains to how much we as student can complete in the 10 days we are there. The ceiling of the verandah needs to clad, therefore it would be more practical that the cladding be a coloured colour bond or plain. The front wall of the verandah, the east elevation and the fascia all need to be painted, which including drying and two coats will take a long duration of time. The other concern is that as much as the aspiration is to have local art on the walls of the building, past experiences of leaving a blank canvas to get the artists to paint, leaves room for doubt whether it will actually eventuate. Emma and I produced three different drafts of options. The first draft was significantly bolder and brighter than the others. It was based on the comment by Phil and Michael to have the building bling and be bright.


1ST DRAFT These examples of the multiple options we prepared show the bright response to the design task. It was decided unanimously including Emma and myself that it was not suitable. The colours clashed too much with each other and competed against the shade structures. We also 60


discussed that it would be very unlikely that an entire wall of the size we were proposing would be dot painted. If we wanted to have that effect we would need to think of a different method such as printing a image onto a sheet to fix to the building such as exists on the public toilet.



In the second draft we dialled back the bling drastically. We kept is very simple and achievable however the result was much more dull than the community had hoped. We tried having different coloured colour-bond sheets on the ceiling of the verandah. This did not have much of an effect as the ceiling is not largely seen from a distance. 62


The building with the dark brown also ended up blending into the shade structures, having the opposite effect of the 1st draft. This was undesirable because the shade structures cannot be seen well, countering their effect. We needed to bring back the culture of the community to the building.



The final version of the painting design for the Libanangu Community Centre is clearly a nice middle ground between the first and second drafts. The colours are not wild and clashing and the patterns defend the design from being dull. The highly scaled portion of dot work ties in the culture of the community without singling out one artists work as the chosen design. Inside the building there will be 64


opportunities to hang and project artists work on the walls so this choice is not removing a valuable chance to display specific local work. This design is also achievable by a group of students in a short amount of time as the design is not too complex. It will also be easier to paint any services that are attached to the side of the building to match the design.

I prefer the light option (image on the above), as the light and playful colours create inviting and safe atmosphere. The design also looks like it could be easily made iconic to be easily identifiable. Reflection and Applications It was much more complex than simply choosing nice colours and designs. The design had to navigate an appealing choice that represented the community,

was culturally sensitive, and how to build and realise it. We had to consider if it wasn’t painted would it be vinyl sticker or printed sheet metal. If it is painted who will paint it? How do we get a design that doesn’t compete with the shade structures? These were all negotiated through the multiple versions and I believe we resolved them all successfully. 65




The packing of the shipping container involved thinking ahead to how the project will be constructed. This way we could cut down the pieces to sizes that would fit into the shipping container but also be pre-cut to fit straight into the design. This way we will have minimal off-cuts and left overs. We also had to think about the most appropriate way of packing the shipping container so that what we needed was easy to find after it had been transported to site. Another factor was 68


how to pack the container so that the pieces did not move when lifting it on and off trucks. We made sure there were no spots where pieces could slide out of place by making braces where needed. It was also a valuable time to practice our skills with the tools. At the beginning of the day our cutting was not super straight but by the last cuts we had mastered how to cut straight and accurate.



It was exciting to see the z columns fabricated after drawing them up in CAD. The columns needed to be lifted by a crane fitted to the back of the truck. The first time the truck arrived to site without a crane. We attempted to get the columns off without a crane but the truck had 70


to be sent back to be delivered on a truck with a crane. It shows how important it is to think through the whole process including all the moments you have to move and lift at different times. The whole process is important to consider not just the end result.

David Obrien

David Obrien


2.0 Research








One troubling issue this documentary brought to the forefront was of the lack of retribution for harm caused to aboriginal people by authorities. When police cause harm or death to aboriginal people it is not prosecuted. Setting a really troubling precedent for the value of aboriginal lives. Aboriginal Australians are the highest incarcerated people in the world. It is so shameful to think about this and that there is not enough being done to rectify it. When people do talk about the issue it commonly results in someone believing that the aboriginal people are at fault for ending up in prison. It is so much deeper than simply disobedient people. This is a long complex issue that stems 76


from racism and a systematic disadvantagedness of aboriginal people. It feels as if Australia is more than willing to help or condemn other countries but when it comes to ourselves we are in denial. The poor health conditions that people live in set world records. There are remote communities where citizens of our country, our first nations people live without access to running water, power and sewerage. These tax payers receive nothing from their government. These are their ancestral spiritual lands where they are at home and cannot leave, they should be able to access basic civil rights in the place they live and have always lived.


One topic that really stuck a chord with me was the raising of the issue that the domestic wars, the frontier wars are not recognised and not represented in the war memorial. Only the white wars are recognised. At Rottenest island where hundreds of aboriginal people were imprisoned, tortured and killed there is no recognition of this tragedy. It was compared to the concentration camps in Germany and the level of recognition that is displayed there with memorial sites. Here on Rottenest Island the prison has been turned into a hotel and luxury spa. There was even historians that claimed the arrival of the British caused no wars, no deaths. Attempting to cause yet another genocide of the first nations people, wiping out their history and stories. 78


Reflection and Application It is important for every person on this earth to be able to tell their story. Aboriginal people have had their voices and story quashed for years. It is so valuable to be able to have places of recognition and remembrance for the story to be portrayed and expressed to as many people as possible for as long as it can. Recognition and acknowledgment is essential and a very critical step towards building a positive and progressive future.


SAND TALK Tyson Yunkaporta makes a very interesting point about the way we as part of the occupying power value and determine the validity of voices from indigenous cultures. The system is set up to always discredit an indigenous voice. Notions of authenticity lead people to question if you are genuinely part of indigenous culture that is known for being an oral culture, therefore if you can write are you really a “true” Aboriginal. Then again discrediting those that have managed to balance two lives of practicing their culture and passing through the education system to become eloquent in English and western practices of writing as communication and argument, because surely if someone is that fluent in English they cannot be “truly” aboriginal. How on earth are we meant to proceed when we are constantly denying and discrediting people of their right to voice their opinions. It was confronting that the thinking can be so different. The book makes you think there are very complex ideas but language is so binary. That language is a lens for perspective. Our 80


languages are constructed to best express ourselves and our way of life and thinking. It at some point becomes the chicken and the egg because our thinking becomes structured by our language. In translation between languages you get a glimpse of how thinking varies between cultures. When another language such as an aboriginal language to English it loses part of its complexity, presenting it as a simplified half version and converting it to the English perspective. Tyson uses the example of a nonlinear path. In aboriginal languages there is simply a word for this, a word that describes what it is and not what it is not. This is because nothing is linear in aboriginal culture, there is a story of a man that tried walking straight and he got sent into the sky for being crazy. This discussion of one single word has already opened a whole discussion and insight to aboriginal thinking, that naturally everything should be a winding journey, time doesn’t move straight, people don’t go through life in a straight line no natural item in the landscape could be described as straight so why would that word be needed.

Reflection and Applications As a way of trying to understand the world around us, we continually compare what is new to what we already know. I wonder when we were kids though and we did not know anything, how was it that we thought. Did we just absorb information and see each moment and action as separate and as truth? It seems through this reading that to fully be able to communicate and begin to understand we need to forget comparisons and translations. Start from the beginning again and just learn and absorb. But how can we do that if we are not immersed in the culture and know the language? I think to proceed, to design successfully in indigenous communities and to consult effectively we need to be constantly aware that what we are observing is not necessarily what everyone is observing. What you may be seeing as an effective design is not what someone else is seeing. They may not be even looking at valuing it for the design such as the number of toilets, the energy efficiency etc. To keep an open mind and open ears allowing the people to tell you what it is that they are aiming for and seeing. Throughout my experience in Bower Studio we have had many opportunities to talk to the community, experience the community and clarify with them what we can achieve together. 81


The film begins with outlining the racial vilification that occurs everyday for Aboriginal Australians such as being pulled over for having a new car or being followed by security in supermarket. These little things build up and become a consistent reminder that you are not seen as equal. This comment really puts racism into perspective; “if you’re a blackfella you’ve got to continually keep proving yourself. But when you’re white once you prove yourself once, then that’s all that matters, if you do bad things after that then they’re ignored.” To constantly have to prove to people that you are more than they think you are would be degrading and exhausting to contradict. You are always first seen as an indigenous before anything else. It is tough to have and develop your own identity when everyone stereotypes you 82


for your skin-type and you become one of many not just an individual. When Sam Newman put on black face and could not understand why it was so hurtful and wrong was shocking. It was only 2014, it was not long ago. It showed that despite how far we have come, we have not come nearly far enough. There is so much more to be done to ensure that many, many more of us are educated on this issue and respectful. All of the photos shown of the slavery could have been confused for those shown of the US. But they were not and people would never recognise it as Australia and our own history as it isn’t widely shared, and talked about. In fact the opposite, it is shoved under a rug and ignored. It was disturbing hearing that all the conversations about racism were being held pr_source.lsr/320x0w.jpg


between white people discussing whether it is or not, but really they have no right or position to have an opinion. Again aboriginal people were left out of a conversation being held about them and their lives and identities. Reflection and Applications It was amazing seeing Goodes reconnect revive on country, by physically connecting. His culture gave him something to connect to, people to connect with, to feel safe with and to be strengthened by. I want to bring this healing and grounding quality of being on country into my design. Instead of trying to keep the land out and ‘progress’ by using modern materials the design should be in-touch with the landscape and the greater meaning behind this. 84

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IN MY BLOOD IT RUNS Through the movie you could see Dujuan struggling with finding purpose and meaning in studying in western schooling. It contradicted much of what he believed. Especially with the juvenile detention news report that was released, I can imagine the resentment towards anything non aboriginal. It strikes me as crazy that we make one group of people fully comply to our culture but it is not the same in reverse. Efforts to be culturally competent are not required at schools not required of businesses as a standard. But the government makes aboriginal children go to English speaking schools and learn half histories with the punishment of refusing welfare and sending people further into debt, into a position where they are less able to help their kids. I was struck again by how important family is, how strong the family bonds are. Dujuan really responded to his family, needed the love and attention which they gave. He reached an equilibrium when living with his father. Those connections drove Dujuan and kept him grounded. 86


I wonder if as a healer being told if you are angry at someone then they become sick that this makes him repress his anger. To prevent himself from getting angry Dujuan seems to just disconnect or remove himself from the situation, by running away. Reflection and Applications Following the life of Dujuan you can get a glimpse of how frustrating and oppressive it can be constantly having to learn another culture as yours is not enough to get by in the world. To constantly be told that your beliefs are not those that are essential to learn, essential to get government funding, essential to get jobs. Any opportunity to display the values of the community and individuals should be harnessed when designing to be able to share who we are. In my design I have embedded the stories in the architecture and provided many places to continually add more. In this way the Kalkaringi community can see their culture and stories around them and share them with visitors demonstrating how valuable their history and culture is to anyone who will listen. story/6642023/quiet-film-thats-difficult-towatch/


ZACH’S CEREMONY In this documentary, we follow the life of Zach through his adolescence to when he goes through his ceremony. Zach’s culture is something he is proud of and passionate about and he wants to learn more. Growing up in the city however near Sydney he struggles with bullying, fitting in with his peers and growing up. Growing up in the city Zach got bullied for his culture and skin colour which he often found hard not to react to with violence. When he visited his families community he also felt disconnected because he had lighter skin and didn’t feel like he knew as much as others. Feeling like he didn’t fit in anywhere Zach rebelled often by slacking on school, attending wild parties and wandering the city late at night. One of the community members commented that these kids they’ve been put under so much strain and ostracised in a way no human should have to. They are getting dehumanised with laws imposed on them that are not imposed on other people. “We have a lot of our young people who have 88


just gone haywire you know? Because they don’t know how they come here, where they come from and who they related to.” Understanding the position of aboriginal people and what they can and most likely have experienced in their lives even in the cities is the first step to unravelling the on-flow reactions. This includes rebelling and causing drama or retreating into substance abuse to numb the pain. Reflection and Applications Being around friends and family that Zach could relate to and share with helped him grow into that man he wanted to be. Zach’s culture and his community helped guide him and he looked to them as leaders and idols. His connection to his past and future within his culture was very important to him. Embedding the community’s culture, past and future into my design for the Warnkurr Social Club allows for people to be connected in yet another aspect of their lives rather than bifurcating parts of lives into different areas.


YOLNGU BOY This movie followed three adolescent boys as they lean on their culture to get them through difficult times. After having such grounding in their culture as kids to see them grow up and be disconnected from their culture and motivation was upsetting. Following their story it struck me how strongly Botj was affected by his family situation. His father was so drunk or high that he couldn’t even recognise his son. He was dealing with a lot of emotion and it was tough to see him bury himself in sniffing and smoking. But when his friends took him out on the water on an adventure his temperament changed. It felt familiar to me as Dujuan’s response to living with his dad. When he lived with his mother he acted out but living with his dad and being on land he felt more content. It was inspiring to see how getting away and just battling the bush together as friends made them bond again after drifting apart while trying to find their identity as young adults. I know this is a movie but the story of bonding with your peers as a young adult is very strong 90


and I know how much it changes your experience of life. When you are forced to be around your friends where you cannot run away and hide from the world you get the opportunities to open up and share and overcome problems together and realise that you aren’t so alone and you are that misunderstood and that you can share and do things together. For these boys their culture offered them this path back to their best selves. Reflection and Applications Being able to turn to their culture and cultural practices the boys could keep Botj from harming himself with substances. Culture and the values it carries with it gave the boys their place in the world and a purpose. It played a key role in this movie and continually across the world. Being able to celebrate and represent this culture and history in key places of social activity in the community is one thing architecture can facilitate. In my design this will be a key focus, refocussing the social club to the social aspect and the sharing of culture and identity. url?sa=i&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww. pdf&psig=AOvVaw0icgiSiE_ZDGPF_7X0zW wL&ust=1584928984555000&source=image s&cd=vfe&ved=0CAIQjRxqFwoTCMiKmenrOgCFQAAAAAdAAAAABAQ


CHARLIE’S COUNTRY This film followed the life of an aboriginal man who’s English name is Charlie. It was difficult to watch throughout the story the endless racist remarks that went unnoticed. The film begins in Charlie’s town where life begins relatively stable. As the story develops the number times that Charlie’s freewill has been denied and decisions are made for him begin to accumulate. From his hunting spear being confiscated and destroyed to having medical decisions made for him. The social and governance system is foreign to aboriginal culture and has been forced upon them. You can see Charlie’s frustration at the seemingly illogical rules and processes. Charlie struggles to find his way back to his culture and identity, especially when he returns to the bush after becoming exasperated with being told no and the corrosive elements of western society such as junk food and cigarettes. It was shocking to see the police officer turn on Charlie, not realising the entire time they had known each other Charlie had unresolved resentment building for him and the role he was playing refusing Charlie 92


his freewill. Seeing the gradual build up of frustration it becomes clear why Charlie becomes a long-grasser and bonds with other people disillusioned from the hope of living their life by their own choices. Throughout the film Charlie looks nostalgically at an image of himself and others dancing at the opera house for the opening in front of Queen Victoria. It seems that this was a time that Charlie felt his culture and knowledge was valued. When he was dancing for the queen he had hope for his future. Reflection and Applications This film gives insight into the perspective of the aboriginal people and their relationship with authorities. It gives an understanding of the social context in which alcohol is abused. Architecture is simply a physical material object. The people and the management of the building is essential to the success of the architecture. The community and the local governance in Kalkaringi from my personal experience is strong and this is evident in the growing enterprise and ongoing development projects such as the new family centre.


CONSULTATION TECHNIQUES There are many ways that consultation can occur which differ per community and situation. Topdown consultation for example is generally more restrictive and formal. Bottom-up consultations however are highly community driven, engaging processes where two entities share in the development of a project. This is how Bower Studio operates. The consultations rely on mutual understanding and acceptance. This requires people to take responsibility of their effort to understand the history and cultures of people they are engaging with. Consultation is essentially a relationship and requires people to trust, listen and share. This means engaging and showing that you have genuine intentions. Having informal conversations to build friendships. Create as many opportunities to engage with people and get to know them. A key concern when communicating in aboriginal communities is to leave space for silence. Silence allows people to think and formulate their 94


response. It also allows the space for people to voice their opinions. Filling in silence removes these chances. Communication should involve a range of methods including visuals, physical models, hand gestures and body language. The expressive capability of non verbal communication is something that should be harnessed. Another key factor that facilitates a successful consultation is time. Allow time to build relationships. Spend time investing in engagement. Continue relationships over time, return to key community events to show your interest. Reflection and Applications It was interesting to take on the task of creating this doco as Emma and I had been to Kalkaringi and experienced the consultation process but writing this knowledge down reinforced what was important. I will be referring to this document to review it throughout the consultation process with the community especially since it is over video calls now and not in-person.


BLACK LIVES MATTER PROTESTS The recent Black Lives Matter protests in June have for me made this studio and its ambitions more important and relevant to my life here in Melbourne. Especially with Covid 19 restricting many activities the protests are the most interesting thing to converse about in peoples lives. There are many different opinions and responses that are being debated such as the effectivity of the protests as a means for change and the responsibility of having mass gatherings with a pandemic. There could be debate for days on the protests but I am going to share my opinions. Many were saying it was irresponsible to attend or host the protests during Covid 19 and that how can we have rules for different groups of people. I would say look at the intervention. These people are only complaining because they are the ones being more restricted but the intervention set about laws and restrictions that directly and blatantly imposed independent restrictions on aboriginal people and no one else. To me the 96


protests could not have been moved as people have suggested to happen after Covid 19. The significance of the protests still being undertaken during a time of pandemic and lock-down displays the passion that people have for this cause. People risked a lot by attending those protests and by hosting those protests because the cause is so important and because it was important for people to still hear it despite what’s going on. This issue has not just surfaced now it has been ongoing since colonisation. These protests have been happening for years and by still going ahead with the protest during this time it is saying that hey we are still here, you have still not heard us and we will risk a lot for you to just listen and understand. A lot of people have also commented that the protest has just jumped on the back of the American protests. What I see that has come out of this is that as a country Australia is a proud people that have an issue with being able to accept our faults and face them front on. We are


keenly critical of other countries and comparing ourselves to overseas nations but we are blind to the issues on our own soil. The lack of media attention to cases such as David Dungay is a symptom of our societies deafness to racism against aboriginal people. One of the biggest misconceptions that I feel has been bandied about is that protests achieve nothing. That standing and disobeying regulations just makes ammunition for your opponents to bring you down for all the people that don’t believe the racism exist to just say your are all extremely reckless and are risking our lives and just made a big deal out of nothing. People say shouting words in a street isn’t going to make people change their opinions its most likely just to make them mad at you. I would have to disagree. For a protest of this magnitude to be organised and run smoothly and peacefully it has raised a lot of awareness. Nation wide protests demanded media attention leading up to and following the protests there has been a multitude of news reports or talk show positions 98


made available to discuss this issue and to have people on that have been advocating for this cause for a long time. Not only has the media been focussing on these issues and people of importance social media and personal conversations have revolved around this topic. Because of one Instagram story I followed the link found another page that had interesting information and opinions that then gave me links to other pages and groups all because the issue was trending. The social media algorithms put the topic to the top and once you clicked on one link the algorithms worked again to show you more and more posts that were on the same topic. Because the issue was trending people that knew about different resources posted lists of where you can go to help the cause, or posts on lists of books that you can read to help your understanding and support indigenous writers, or posts about indigenous films. The list goes one. The protests have achieved a great deal. All around Australia people are having debates over the issue and people that have been following for a while or reading and listening can speak up



and talk to their peers and share their knowledge on the issue to better progress the cause. All the knowledge I have accumulated through Bower Studio has given me a unique perspective that I can share with my friends that have not had the same experience. It has led to some interesting conversations that fleshed out different issues and different perspectives on the issue. All of these conversations are also bringing to light how ignorant we as a nation are about our history and the reason for the Black Lives Matter Protest. Our limited curriculum on Australian history lumps everything into the stolen generation giving the perception that that was the one grand misdeed of our past and nothing else. The apology from Kevin Rudd in some peoples perception was the summing up of that chapter of history and now we just move on and never talk about it. This glossing over and suppression of a really complex and painful past means that we cannot move on. If we never learn about the past we cannot understand 100 RESEARCH

everyone’s positions and the reasons for what is happening now. If we never learn about the past we are doomed to repeat it and I fear that is what is happening in Australia. People are educating themselves independent of the schooling system to help them understand what is going on. For our Prime Minister to claim that there was no slavery in Australia shows how deep the ignorance is. That the leader of our country does not know and can spread the misinformation about these issues is baffling. How can we expect a government that does not even know that there was slavery of Indigenous Australians to appropriately govern the whole of Australia including indigenous Australians. A lot of people do not understand our history and so do not know how to move forward. Welcome to country ceremonies, plaques, acknowledgement of country statements lose their value without understanding. To people that do not know the history that do not know what the actions mean these gestures are just empty tokenistic acts that are used to deflect any accusation that you are

racist. But if there is understanding then together we can share in those acts that reference our past and move forwards communally. Understanding is essential to our ability to become a cohesive community as a nation. The most important thing to do during this time and any time where Aboriginal people are given a chance to stand up and share their opinions is to just listen. No debates as to whether they should be speaking or the circumstances as to how they were given the stage or if they are the ones most appropriate to speak or whether this is the right time to speak. Just stop and listen to what one other person is saying that they are feeling because with each personal story we hear we can understand and grow. The world becomes a better place when people can share their personal story to attentive and compassionate souls. Reflection and Applications What’s come out of these protests is a renewed

importance for me of the importance of the intention of my design. Misunderstandings especially with the history of Australia are solved with sharing information. My design makes physically present the traces of some of the stories of the community in Kalkaringi and the Gurindji people. By designing the spaces we inhabit to reference and respond to the stories around us we become more aware of our history. The design specifically makes the stories present in a universally recognisable method of drawing and allows people to be curious to question what has happened in the space around them across time and how it connects to greater spaces in the surrounding landscape. When people visit that may have no idea of the history of Kalkaringi they will see the paths in the concrete and the symbols embedded in them and wonder why it is that they are there and they can ask someone around them. This acts not only as a prompt for the telling of a story it creates an ice breaker opportunity for people to connect with each other. The story could be told without needing someone to tell it but it is more significant that the story is told from one person to another. 101


What kind of story are we telling through how we handle heritage? When we talk about heritage in architecture thoughts of Victorian terraces and old detailed brick buildings jump to mind. Heritage in architecture doesn’t seem to have a place for aboriginal heritage as it is more revolved around the natural landscape. We’ve seen recently how the nation’s understanding of heritage is oriented. 45,000 yr old caves that had archaeologically dated and recorded artefacts and evidence of aboriginal existence and culture existed in WA. They were places of unimaginable importance to the community whose ancestors lived and possibly still spiritually reside in that landscape. It should also have been a space of significant heritage importance to Australia. Unfortunately Rio Tinto were given the power by government to destroy 102 RESEARCH

these caves. On the other foot recently after the black lives matter protests there has been a police guard around a bronze statue of Captain Cook. A statue of a man that I believe a lot of people know was the beginning of the abuse of aboriginal people and land. Yet this statue that holds no great irreplaceable value was being given protective forces and the irreplaceable history in those caves was given up freely to be destroyed. What does this have to do with architecture? The Revaluing Heritage summer 2020 issue of the Architects Australia magazine unravelled some of the issues revolving around aboriginal heritage in architecture. We cannot tear down the cities that have been built upon aboriginal land. We can however



make sure that the stories in the landscape we have built upon is still seen in the architecture we design. Architecture resides within the landscape, space is made in the landscape to allow a place for architecture. It seems almost logical that in site analysis in design architecture should be aware of its heritage in the landscape it inhabits not just on the heritage built upon it. As Jack Mitchell explained heritage is not limited to physical space or objects. Heritage for aboriginal culture is much more complex and should be seen as a continuous system of actions and practices that if interrupted breaks down the whole network. In this way architecture should not simply tell of a story or act that has happened in the space. Architecture should create spaces that enable the use of that space for the 104 RESEARCH

practicing of heritage and encourage the use of the space for the continuation of heritage. There is no point designing a space for that purpose if it is not going to be used as such. This involves consultation and collaboration to ensure designs achieve their intentions to make sure that designs can fully provide the most that they are capable of. Reflection and Application My design not only records the heritage of the landscape but also contains spaces that encourage the practice of sharing heritage. What is important in my design is the context in which the Warnkurr Social club exists. Not just physical and environmental but social and cultural context, both being rich and complex with different challenges to address.

Juukan Cave site before Mining began

Juukan Cave site after Mining began and before it was destroyed




LAST DRINKS I have contrasting and conflicted opinions of this reading. I agree with Paul with the absurdity of the Intervention. That we were asked to accept that aboriginal people a culture of many, many years suddenly has forgotten how to look after their kids. That aboriginal people were less evolved than people of European descent. It was saddening and dehumanising how quickly people believed it. Paul also stated how there was an expectation that after land rights were honoured that aboriginal people would return to their hunter gatherer lifestyle or that aboriginal enterprises would pop up selling aboriginal culture. It is infuriating how many cultures are only valued for its historical exoticness and people assume everyone knows these skills and that it is the only valuable part of the culture. I was infuriated at his comment that aboriginal people have nothing to worry about for being kicked out of their homes because of land rights. 108 RESEARCH

This comment is the opposite of everything that I have experienced. Aboriginal people feel and are shown how they have no control over their homes everyday. The government owns them and they are not allowed to alter them without permission. It is an interesting thought that Paul has about time and the different perspectives on time that Aboriginal culture has. There is no strong sense of to rush in aboriginal life from one thing to another. To others this can be perceived as laziness. Reflection and Applications This document shows how powerful perspective is to perception. Key with the time scenario depending on what you bring to the situation you can view the same situation in a multitude of ways. Therefore to be able to collaborate effectively it is key to allow the time to understand different perspectives and realise that in disagreements there is most likely a difference of perspective that is getting in the way. ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=&sr=



The Quarterly Essay provides the opportunity to give responses and opportunity for the author to respond to the responses. But Paul gave no structured response just an angry retort to a comment on a personal opinion or attribute. This response is important to properly analysing the last drinks essay as it gives insight into the perspective from which Paul is writing. The responses highlighted how Paul would flit between personal expression of his anger and bitterness and then have an odd remark of quality analysis and consideration. It was reassuring that considering the personal attacks taken out on some of the responders they took the effort to respond with reasoned educated responses and didn’t rise to the attack. It is concerning to me that someone is given an 110 RESEARCH

opportunity to report and make a thoughtful analysis in a public platform such as this but they use it to vent their pent up emotions and not tell the facts. It worries me that angry opinions are able to spread misinformed statements and then give basis for others anger and biases. It is much faster to spread negative news than positive news. Hate can spread like Covid 19 ruining lives and progress all over the place. The responses to the essay demonstrate that there are people out there that are level headed, are competent at sorting through bullshit and shutting it down with logical and reasoned arguments. This essay proves that for every angry rant there are multiple people ready to set the record straight.


Larissa holds the Rudd government to account for not analysing the intervention and fixing the flaws, instead they just kept the same policies and ignoring the flaws.

in aboriginal communities and the restrictions and subsequent stereotypes and assumptions being made by uneducated people.

It is loud baseless tirades that make it difficult to make positive change in the Territory. If there are such loud voices policies such as the intervention occur that dehumanise and stigmatise Aboriginal Australians.

Reflection and Applications It is important where possible to make room for and allow a platform to voices that need to be heard. Voices of people that can talk of their personal experiences and share positive truthful information. Otherwise only the loudest voices get heard, and they are no necessarily the voices we should be listening to. My design for the Warnkurr Social Club focusses on story telling through many different modes. With so many opportunities many people can share their stories through the method that they prefer.

As said by Zach in Zach’s ceremony, why is it that there are laws that apply to only aboriginal people that take away their freedoms and power of decision making. This surrounds the larger current issue of alcohol 112



FROM HUNTING TO DRINKING This reading begins by explaining that over time the laws governing the legality of aboriginal people drinking has gone from drinking being illegal to it being allowed to aboriginal people being provided aid. This final situation where money and supplies are guaranteed means that people have decided that they do not have to work and as such can spend all their money on alcohol. It is important to understand that this is the result of the situation and context within which people live. So many times people just dump blame on other entities or history and rid themselves of responsibility, sweep it under the rug. But you can’t put all blame on the past, there are present issues and ways of addressing it. If there weren’t still current issues everything would sort itself out. “The Mornington Islanders have to contend with an alien form of life in which choice has been effectively eliminated; hence, they have little control of their lives.” 114


Government and Shire are anathema. No one has asked them what kind of government they want. They are now at the mercy of unseen forces in Canberra. “Everybody outside of their world acts as if they know what is best for them, but when decisions by outsiders prove disastrous the Mornington Islanders are blamed for the outcome.” The architecture surrounding places of drinking reflects the lack of trust in and belief that Aboriginal people are lesser and cannot handle alcohol. It reinforces the shame. It is cruel that choices are made for Aboriginal people and then they are the ones condemned for reacting badly to being controlled and given shitty conditions. They want no part in these policies, they were not involved in the decision making. Currently the situation is that there is financial subjugation of people that no longer own their houses. Because of the way the system is setup


it leaves people needing money to live well but the aboriginal people have little possessions, not even their homes on the land that was symbolically given back to them. The police are another constant reminder that aboriginal people are not in control of their lives, constantly giving them fines for actions they find part of their daily lives. Mornington Islanders have even lost control over their bodies, births are in hospitals, and deaths end in the cemetery neither of which are a choice. The shire continually forgets it is not a white community. They don’t ask why the houses are being ruined, in which case they would find that it is not simply vandalism, it is because the houses are unsuitable for their lives. The shire always acts in accordance to their values as white people and doesn’t consider or ask for the opinions of the aboriginal people. The reading states that the differences between the cultures are too great for aboriginal people to keep their values except in ritualistic ways as whites don’t allow them to. White Australia wants full compliance in the ways that they decide are 116


appropriate. People need to stop thinking aboriginal people are biologically different. It’s a lie and it dehumanises people, it belittles them. It evades the responsibility of Europeans and government. “We should instead be examining the social context in which people drink especially excessive drinking” In the past it was successful hunters being chased for their rightful part of the kill, now it is the same for winners of gambling. Just like hunting the winnings go quickly they cannot last. The gambler is expected to be generous but it is more complicated than hunting as there is no traditional and rightful way of splitting up winnings. Losing isn’t a huge deal as they can always get money off relatives and the government. Because of demand sharing the flow of money is swift throughout community and gambling is more for the fun and sport of the game not the winnings.

Reflection and Applications This reading gives a strong basis of understanding for the whole history and context in which aboriginal drinking exists. It is not a simple situation. Like much in life it is part of a larger network of history, circumstance and context. This is a great reading for beginning to design the extension of the Warnkurr social club. It is difficult without greater understanding, what the role of the design of places of drinking should be. Should places of drinking in aboriginal communities actively discourage drinking or should they be more passive and let the management of the space take that role. After reading this essay I feel that the club should be designed to best encourage social behaviour within the space. Encourage it to be a place of community and enjoyment. I hope that my design will function well, if the laws do change and allow social clubs in remote aboriginal communities to be run as other drinking venues in the Northern Territory and the fences can come down. I feel that purposely designing to discourage drinking is not learning from the past and would only end up failing. Instead my design aims to include other enjoyable attractions that will enhance the experience of the space and put less emphasis on drinking whether is it emphasis to discourage or allow drinking. 117


Wadeye Community in the west of the Northern Territory has had a volatile experience of opening a social club within their community. The community began as a Catholic Church mission when Aboriginal drinking was banned by the government. When this law was ended the leadership in the mission undertook a report on the possible impact of opening a social club within the community. The report stated that habits of drinking were learned when prohibition existed, resulting in habits of quickly drinking, high strength alcohol hidden from the view of the authorities. The plans for the social club were to re-educate the habits for drinking, to encourage a more social and measured practise. The social club was to be pleasant, have music, good food, entertainment, provision for families and to create pride in something good. The social club opened in the 1970’s and was a hub for social 118


activity, older residents dressed up to visit the club, music was played and beers were bought with tokens. However as the number of tokens were limited to four per member, drinkers coerced non-drinkers to sign up so that they could gain extra tokens. Alcohol began a form of legal tender within the community with groups forming aiming to take turns sharing tokens to get other members inebriated. An AA style group was set up in the community by Andrew Howley. He set up a model of support that also laid blame to friends and family for enabling their relatives to abuse alcohol. This group became named Makura Wunthay and was made up of the non drinkers. The management of the alcohol related behaviour was dealt with swiftly by the club, but


when the club closed the behaviour after hours was left to the police. People became scared to walk town at night, with people roaming the streets with knives. The smashing of the club was well organised, with Freddie Cumaiyi leading the group dressed in a traditional outfit. The rule was that no one was to be hurt, only the club. The police were even warned that it was going ahead and that they would surrender willingly afterwards. Key members of the effort to close the club were the aboriginal women that worked in the health clinic. After the club was smashed there were questions from the government about reinstating the liquor license. The women wrote a letter each time it was considered and gave their arguments for the closure of the social club. These women and their actions were inspiration for other communities dealing with similar problems. Inspiration that they can stand up and be heard. 120 RESEARCH

Reflections and Applications It was sad to see the social club go through such a tumultuous history. It began a positive social gathering space, but turned into a divisive aspect of the community. The governance of the Murrinh Patha Social Club was that the club was separate from the aboriginal corporation/committee thus there was not a fluid collaboration. Another issue that occurred was the breakdown of the aboriginal committee because of the highly fractured community of multiple language groups. Although Kalkaringi is also made up of multiple language groups, it is recognised that the land is Gurindji and so those traditional owners have the power. Gurindji Corp has also proven itself as a strong structure of leadership within the community and capable of achieving large goals. Gurindji Corp will own and run the Warnkurr Social Club as best fits the community.




MEMORIAL LANDSCAPES How are these memorial landscapes designed to be used? Does the design mark a place to be memorialised or does it make a place for the culture that is being memorialised. For example the William Barrack building. The William Barrack building uses a piece of aboriginal history to mark a place but this place is not intended for use or even considers use of the building by Aboriginal people. Aboriginal culture is not about physical objects and marking permanent structures. The culture is more about respecting nature and what is already there and not affecting it. In indigenous examples education and memorial process is secondary (happens simultaneously) while doing something. It doesn’t matter where you are or what you are doing while you are learning it just matters that you are doing something while learning. The experience of the landscape depends on what you bring to it and your own knowledge or what is being shared with you. The secrets of the 124 RESEARCH

landscape can only be interpreted and shared by people who understand it and know it. Reflection and Applications So it brings to question how much can you design a memorial landscape to tell a story? Is it important to have everyone understand the memorial space or is it important to have it understood by the culture that is being memorialised? I think that how you make that decision is by defining your brief and the reason for the design. Is it meant to be a space that one group of people understand fully or is it meant to be a space that everyone can be educated about a space in time? In the design for the social club the brief from the community was that the club should function first and foremost for the locals but also be a place where visitors and local can connect. This includes passers through and invited guests such as from government. My design provides a place for locals to socialise alongside many opportunities for visitors to hear and see the stories of Kalkaringi.



One key message from this mini doco was that culture is not an exhibition and as such cultural spaces should not be design for the consumption of culture but the practice and sharing of culture. It was interesting noting that despite the many different countries the location didn’t have an effect on the program, they all had similar aims. There was a difference between the projects in locations where the indigenous people are the majority and where they are not. In locations where the indigenous people are the minority they need a place to have their own voice. In places where the indigenous culture is the majority the projects centred around providing facilities. The projects with a single or more simplified goal were more successful than those that tried to solve everything. In the project Thread the goal was to create a place for the community to gather, and it achieved this goal, compare 126 RESEARCH

to others which had high aspirations of solving almost all the issues in the community. In the Thread project there was a community leader that stayed active through the process of design, consultation and construction. This helped with keeping the community on board and the design purposeful. Reflection and Applications It is important to pick a key focus for the design. I feel through multiple consultations with Kalkaringi and Gurindji corp throughout the years Bower Studio has worked with them there is a good focus on achieving individual goals through multiple projects. The long term goals for the community are not trying to be achieved in one project but rather over many progressive stages. Gurindji Corp is also very well set up and display strong leadership throughout the projects being the one clear contact between collaborators and the community.



As examined in the Cultural Spaces International Mini Doco the best projects choose one specific problem to address in the design. Architecture and a single project can only achieve so much. Unlike the Uluru Kata Tjutu community centre which many of the examples are close to the town or community and as such are used more frequently as they are accessible. It would be interesting to get the briefs for each of the projects to see what they were meant to respond to, what their goals were and if they were successful or not. Analysing what the design was meant to achieve or what it thought it could achieve would give a better understanding to whether it was a good design and successful or not. It is important for a building to support the 128 RESEARCH

current cultural needs of the community not just display the past. How the cultural centre is run is key and what its intention is. If it is to educate and be a tourist destination or is it for the community or is it a place of exchange. Reflection A lot of effort is focused on the Freedom Day Festival in Kalkaringi but it only happens for such a small part of the year. What services the community for the other times of the year. The Wave Hill Walk Off Pavilions are located along the Walk Off track and are used not only during the festival but also as a teaching moment when the school takes the kids on the track to teach them of their history. This way of practising and remembering culture through action is powerful.


ULURU KATA TJUTU CULTURAL CENTRE magazine-27-14749399.html#!/page46

The process of designing the Uluru Kata Tjutu Cultural Centre was long and patient. From experience and other research it was essential for such an important building to have a significant duration of consultation. However even after such a long and thorough consultation the community still felt disappointed by the result. The key issue that I believe is to fault is the clear identification of the target audience for the building. Is the building for the Anangu people or is it for the visitors? As it is built today the building functions to serve the visitors and inform them of the Anangu culture and beliefs especially their feelings towards climbing the rock. In the consultation and design there were thoughts that the building would be primarily for the Anangu people to operate and use but also allow guest inside. However because of its location so far from town the people don’t use it for cultural purposes such as ceremonial dances. 130 RESEARCH

It was also suggested that feelings of frustration and failure to improve aboriginal life in general has been transferred onto the building. Those Anangu that do go to the centre feel that their culture isn’t being respected or heard and that the centre is a place for their culture to simply be consumed for enjoyment. These superficial interactions are not rewarding for them so they avoid visiting. Reflection and Applications It is an essential step in the process of designing to identify the stakeholders and intended users of the building and ensure that these line up with the desires of the clients. In the Warnkurr social club design it is important to establish who are the key users of the space and entertainment. Is it the families, visitors, government representatives, the freedom day festival or the locals who visit after a day of work.


PRECEDENT - PUNMU AND PARNNGURR HEALTH CENTRES In the Punmu and Parnngurr Health centres their design has helped me understand how a combination of on-site and prefabricated design can achieve the high standards of facilities and still have place-making elements to it within a tight budget. The design has helped me understand how you can turn a prefabricated portable into a community building. The ideology behind the Punmu and Parnngurr health centres was co-designing. Designing in consultation to achieve a design specific to each community and to ensure that the services received in the community are of a high standard found in urban areas. Extensive consultation was needed to achieve this. The Punmu and Parnngurr Health centres have got high quality health services, cultural art display and sustainable temperature control and passive hot water supply. The building is shaded by a large pergola which apart from lowering the heating also holds solar panels and hot water heating panels. The building also has double stud frames internally with breaks between the studs to give a thermal break. What I find lacking 132 RESEARCH

however is the landscaping around the health centres. Perhaps it is because these photos were taken just after construction but there isn’t any low walling to direct people or external seating. The building looks really foreign in the space because of this. I believe the best way that the Punmu and Parngurr health centres can be improved is to connect them to the larger community by way of landscaping. At the moment the centres look like they have just been placed on empty pots of land, they don’t relate to the land they are on. There could be landscaping with plants and rocks to create an external space to add to the features in the community or and outdoor play feature for children waiting for the parents to finish inside. Reflection and Applications This design was very limited by the budget and but still achieved the aim of providing health services and passive and solar energy benefits. I think this is a useful precedent to see how even on a tight budget you can squeeze in some fun design elements such as the laser cut art works or the undulating pergola covering the structure.




PRECEDENT - GUNBALANYA SPORTS AND SOCIAL CLUB Gunbalanya Sports and Social Club shows how a social club can be well run, with quality facilities and be a place the whole community can enjoy. The Gunbalanya youth, Sport and Recreational club held performances in the club for all ages and you can see how big the turn out was. This precedent has helped me understand how a social club can really be more than a beer garden and how it can support community activities. The ideology of the Gunbalayna Sports and Social club is that of supporting communal relaxation and social activities. The club supports many different uses and invites the whole community to be together. In the Gunbalanya sports and social club there is plenty of room and the facilities are of good quality. It is clean and designed like any beer garden in the NT. The metal fence is disguised with tea tree like matting and it is a really large area so the fence does not feel like it is overpowering the patrons. The club also provides 136 RESEARCH

different areas for different activities, the bar is undercover, the pool tables are separated into a room, there is a large beer garden area and the stage doubles as the TV viewing area. However there is no provision for a non drinking entrance and area of the club. The kids are only allowed in on days when it is organised. I also wonder how the large beer garden is used, or if it is largely empty. I think the greatest area for improvement in the Gunbalanya sports and social club is to improve the stage so that it can hold its own equipment for use when people want to perform and to improve the tv situation. As the tv is too far away and too small to be of much use for communal viewing. The Gunbalanya Club puts in a lot of effort to display and sell local art. It would be really lovely to personalise the building by way of incorporating the local talent in the design in some way. These two precedents have shown how a


building can facilitate the programmatic requirements of a community venue, acting as a community binder not breaking the community apart. Reflection and Applications The key question that was raised in discussions was “Is it important to have a building look beautiful?� This led to questioning what is meant by beautiful buildings? I believe it is important to have beautiful buildings but what beautiful means to different people is varied. To me beautiful means that the building brings pride to people, and they enjoy the feeling of engaing with the space, they see their values represented in the building. In the Gunbalanya club, the building is very funtional and kept very clean however what I feel is lacking from the design is the place making that distinguishes this club as a part of the Gunbalanya community. In these images if they didnt have people I could have thought that the building was inn any tropical location. There is no clues as to who thecommunity is and what their values are. 138 RESEARCH photos/?ref=page_internal


Another form of pavilion in some respects, the Krakani Lumi (

resting place) was developed to act as temporary accomodati


for hikers undertaking the journey between wukalina (Mt William

to larapuna (Eddystone Point) traversing the culture homelan

of palawa. The guided journey is operated entirely by the A original Land Council and is the first tourism configuration of

kind. This administrative structuring surely supported the int

gration of aboriginal thought and history into the physical desi

outcome, although the particularities of the consultation proce

are not clear. The quartered dome interior is derived from trad

tional seasonal shelters of Tasmania's first peoples, which we

fabricated from arched branches and sheets of bark and oft KRAKANI LUMI, HINDS ARCHITECTS, TASMANIA Krakani Lumi could be TAYLOR describedAND as a sheltered alcove in dialogue with the central firepit a relationship that may be able to be loosely mimicked at the Warnkurr Social Club.

featured depictions of constellations enscribed within. The ope

ness of the dome coupled with the gradual curvature of the w


Krakani Lumi (or resting place) is an accommodation facility for hikers in Tasmania. The hike and accommodation are owned and run by the aboriginal land council and is designed to respect the aboriginal land. The design refers to traditional aboriginal shelters and tells a story of concealing and revealing reflecting different rights to knowledge.


Reflection The curves in this design are great for the slow transition of space. You can’t be either in or out, you are somewhere on a curve. It creates a more inviting space that can accommodate many different experiences. Krakani Lumi could be described as a sheltered alcove in dialogue with the central firepit a relationship that may be able to be loosely mimicked at the Warnkurr Social Club.

avoidance and inter-gender relationships perhaps Adjacent and Below: The multipurpose space facilitates such Naidi Community Hall - Caukin Studio which will need to be taken in to account when activities are craft and communal daycare in a social setting.

considering the use of large open areas.

the Design Esquisse activity and shall certainly factor in to my project.

strength of this precedent is the notion of xible non prescriptive space. This allows for a de variety of programmatic functions to occur thin. Given the nature of the brief I feel it would great to create architecture that allows the er to choose how to use it rather than being ternalistically dictated by potentially ill informed me and place specific features. These ideas have direct correlation to the learning uncovered in

However, whilst acknowledging the benefit of flexibility George and David highlighted the challenge of enabling people to take ownershi an apparently generic space. Also encouraging to note the complexity of cultural factors such a avoidance and inter-gender relationships perha which will need to be taken in to account when considering the use of large open areas.


ANaidi strength of this precedent is the notion of Community Hall was designed for flexible non space. Thisofallows for a can also become more intimate and feel safer. Or a communityprescriptive and built with the help wide variety of programmatic functions to occur does this divide up useful space too much? volunteering architecture students. The design Can you create a way for people to define space within. Given the anature of community the brief I feel it would aimed to provide place for activities be great to create architecture that allows the and own it, but not leave it too open that it and performances. doesn’t get used. I believe that in this case for user to choose how to use it rather than being this design the open space works as it was to run Reflection paternalistically by potentially informed Do larger spacesdictated mean more flexibility or ill less large activities for the community however this time and place specific features. ideas have definition of space. In a large openThese room people does not work everywhere and leaving space congregate around the edge and the middle is a direct correlation to the learning uncovered in open to be defined by the users could be seen as

a big empty space. Do smaller spaces of a larger 71. number become more useful? Smaller spaces

an un-designed space.



This project is a set of flexible cube pavilions. The pavilions can be opened up to suit the use at successful design? If there is one position that is that time and closed down again at the end. The most preferred by the users then could that not varied woven panels also offer a one directional have been identified in consultation and made as viewpavilions from inside the pavilion outside and framework not ubo de Totora’ are comprised of atosimple timber with inset panels of woven cattail reeds. These can be easily a fixed element. the other way. It is a unique privacy feature. Passive surveillance is a preference in Kalkaringi

wapped and replaced to alter the experiential quality within the cubes.


Reflection Is moveable really useful? Do people actually move flexible architecture or do they not feel comfortable, or just find one comfortable position? If the case is the latter, then is it


and RR informed us is key in the social club. A separation of spaces for different genders can be useful but there should visual connection throughout the club. So this partial privacy screening but still able to see movement could be a useful idea.


The Gunalili Centre has re-purposed a colonial hotel and pub to be an aboriginal culture centre. It has many programs from cafe, art gallery, shop and festival/performance venue. Reflection I am drawn to the design of the exterior landscaping as a place that is open. It invites

people to use the space even when the centre is closed. The centre adds to the experience of the town. This is something I have included in my design for the social club, by not fencing off the non drinking area. This allows the basketball hoop and bmx track area to be used throughout the day.



The Pitt St Mall redevelopment provided the opportunity to redesign the urban landscape that so effectively ignores the original landscape. In Sydney the Tank Stream is a site of great importance to the local aboriginal people, as a great source of fresh water it was the central location for trade and gathering. The Trade Stream was redirected through sewers early in colonisation and has been lost under the city until now. This design now centres around the drainage system that maps the trade stream and represents it with symbolic brass grates. Reflection and Application Although this design does make clear a piece of aboriginal heritage it is very shallow. It feels more tokenistic than effective. The design did 144 RESEARCH

not consult with aboriginal people. The design does not explain the heritage significance of the Trade Stream. The design is not make space for aboriginal people. It feels more like the designers thought that it was neat that the Trade Stream ran through the middle of the shopping/trade strip. Despite my concerns with the design process and functional result the idea of resurfacing hidden lines and paths from the past into the present experience of the space is something I am trying to achieve in my design. This design is attempting to become a palimpsest for the story of this space and that is something I have done through the mapping of paths directing to stories in the surrounding landscape of Kalkaringi. Rather than wiping the slate clean with each new project it is important to acknowledge the past and present and prepare for the future in design.





Here are images of the original social club first set up in the settlement erected after the walk off. It was a modest building but it reflected a desire in the community of those that left the station. The desire to have a place to relax and engage in social activities, to live their life their way is reflected here. The shade structure at the entrance to the club is something Rob Roy reflected was effective. The shade was created by layering spinifax onto chicken wire and then holding it in place with another layer of chicken wire. On the extremely hot days the spinifax was hosed down to create a natural evaporative cooling system. 148 RESEARCH

On the right there is an image of Gough Whitlam sitting in front of the social club when he visited Kalkaringi. The Muramalla Gurindji Cattle Company was set up with the help of supporters from Melbourne to help with the legal fees. Muramalla is a rough interpretation of the gurindji word ngurramala meaning traditional owner. The track mob those that walked off the Wave Hill Station wanted to set up their own smaller station with the club, a shop and other facilities necessary for a community.


These are the houses that were provided to the Gurindji people while working on the Wave Hill Cattle Station. They were of flimsy material with minimal openings for breeze on hot days. The corrugated iron would get extremely hot and be very uncomfortable to live in. 150 RESEARCH

After the walk off the people began building a settlement to live in while protesting for their land rights. The materials they chose to use are very natural and effective at coping with the climatic conditions of Kalkaringi. The Adobe bricks are effective at keeping the heat out of the building in high temperatures and equally effective on cool nights at keeping the space warm.

This structure is fully transparent and open, offering cool shade in the blasting sun. It is constructed with tree trunks and branches and is covered in spinifax. The spinifax is a good quality insulator with the depth of the coverage having many air pockets that keep the temperatures down.

This is a variation on the spinifax shade structure as it is a circular shape radiating out from a central column. This structure has no front or back unlike the one before is has no railing dictating the direction of the pavilion.



The Warnkurr Sports and Social Club was originally opened as a completely owned Gurindji enterprise. Opened by the local council at the time. 152 RESEARCH

However in 2008 during the intervention when the federal government took over control of the Northern Territory the ownership of the Warnkurr Social Club was transferred to the Victoria Daly Regional Council. The shire covers an area of 153,287 square kilometres and has a head office 470km away in Katherine. All the profits from the club are for the regional council to decide where to allocate them within the shire. Money from Kalkaringi residents can end up 550kms away in Pine Creek.


In September this year it has been agreed that Gurindji Aboriginal Corporation will once again have ownership of the Warnkurr Social Club. 153

3.0 Karungkarni Arts and Culture Centre




The Karungkarni Art and Culture centre is a busy space that caters for creating art, displaying art, displaying cultural displays and history and selling books written of the rich culture of Kalkaringi. However the building is struggling to meet each of these needs to their best ability. The brief for the esquisse design exercise is to increase and improve the art storage and display. The art works in the art centre currently are stacked against the wall if they are in frames or if they are unframed they lay flat stacked in a pile. The tall warehouse space has a large expanse of walls some of which are punctured with openings for light and cross breezes. The most open wall space is above eye level, higher than is ideal for hanging art. In the middle of the room there is a large bench space that is used for painting art. There is also art supplies stored in the corners of 156 KARUNGKARNI ARTS AND CULTURE CENTRE

the room. They get delivered in bulk because of the remote nature of Kalkaringi, so a large area is required to store them. The art centre gets its most visitors when the Freedom Day Festival is held. The art centre needs to be flexible to this influx in visitors and transform from an art workshop into an art centre that is capable of displaying more art. Another concern in the art centre is the unsealed openings. Over summer the art centre experienced a dust-storm that made a mess throughout the inside.




Damien, Hermione and Lexi


A ceiling mounted hanging system that lowers up and down. George raised that break ins happen through high windows so hanging art high won’t stop thieves. The height is a good way to get extra space. But complex systems could break easily in Kalkaringi.

This design is fold-able display boards that unfold from a holding and storage unit. Where will this unit fit? How do you access the stored items if the boards are folded up.



Gaby, Andrew, Caleb

This design is made up of modular boards that can be customised to the occasion. Where does all of this get set up? The art centre is so full already with art creation.

This is a design of modular units of storage and art hanging. There are possible issues of movability and where to store the units. How do you access the storage compartments when the units are all stacked together? 159

ESQUISSE DESIGN My design for the storage and display of art focussed on increasing the available art display space. My scheme had four different strategies of different complexity. The first and most simple strategy would be to create a hanging rail or shelf from steel c or z sections fixed to the wall. Then hooks from the c section can be sued to hang the art work. The second strategy was to create a perforated metal screen wall that allows for flexible composition of the art works across a large space. The perforated metal screen reflects the art centre entry door and continues the Kalkaringi story from the wave hill walk off pavilions into the art centre. Removable hooks and hanging methods can be inserted into the holes of the perforations. This wall could be composed with a range of large and small paintings to create a dynamic display. The third strategy involves fixing a perforated screen panel with hinges to the existing doors. The perforated screen turns the door space into a flexible hanging space for everything from 160 KARUNGKARNI ARTS AND CULTURE CENTRE

paintings to tote bags. The panel can also be fixed in the open position to have hanging on both sides doubling the available area simply. The final strategy is a portable art storage unit that has art hanging space on the sides. The two units have shelving accessible from two ends that can house frames finished or blank. The open ends make it easy to flick through the artworks like books on a bookshelf. The two hanging sides of the units are 3mx2.5m for maximum display space. The wheels make it easy to be flexible t the needs of the art centre at the time. This means the units can be out displaying art or stacked together for pure storage. The thinking behind my design was to utilise the existing building fabric as much as possible as the space is already quite busy and simply adding more to it would not help. The designs were also created in a way that they could be constructed from easily sourced materials not proprietary systems. This meant that the design could be easily constructed or replicated and repaired without hassle and cost.

Art hanging rail

Hinged Perforated door Perforated metal screen wall

Karungkarni Art and Culture Centre

161 Annabelle Annabelle

wall hanging and display details


wall hanging and display detail


Art hanging rail Hinged Perforated door

Art hanging and storage

Perforated metal screen wall

Art hanging rail



Art hanging and storage 165



PENNY’S REVIEW OF THE DESIGNS A general presentation comment for reflection was to try and present your story, what aspects of the design are you responding to, what is your angle? An introduction into what you identify as the key issues gives a basis for how your design responds to it. It is also a good grounding to help those you are presenting to understand what your story is. Penny liked the idea of utilising the existing wall space in the art centre. It would provide an immediate increase in the amount of display space. She raised her concerns about the hanging methods for the paintings however. This was an aspect that I had made assumptions about. I would have preferred having a consultation session with penny before the final presentation to get her input of what she prefers as hanging methods, what is important to watch out for as she is so knowledgeable in this area. She is knowledgeable of how things can work and won’t work in Kalkaringi as well. I didn’t want to 168 KARUNGKARNI ARTS AND CULTURE CENTRE

provide the art centre with a proprietary hanging system that had specific hooks as it could be very difficult to replace or fix if there is damage to the system. I would have liked to have discussed with Penny if there was a way to create a simple hook system that could be made from available materials. Such input was given at the presentation such as that a frame has to be hung from two points to not skew the frame. Another aspect that Penny made aware to us was that the storage units and the pallets of art materials need to be lifted at times by a forklift. Another key design concern that Penny raised was that not all the art works are in frames. Some of the painting are unframed canvas and they are stored lying flat at the current time. This could be accommodated for by having a rolled canvas storage system in one of the open shelves. However hanging the art is another question. Perhaps using a similar system to poster hanging systems.


Removable Shelving Front Elevation interior mesh doubles as tool storage



Side Elevation


Front Elevation


concealed caster wheels

This was a clever idea to combine the storage unit and desk bench space as one. In this design Gaby considered the storage of art tools and supplies as well as the art works themselves.




Gaby Miegeville-Little

Reflection and Applications It is important to think about how to make the use of the space for the whole process not just the end result.

Damien Cresp

This idea from Damien was innovative lifting the art work into the high ceilings. The panels hang high and store safely from wind and flooding.

Reflection and Applications The feedback from Penny was that this was a clever design but she mentioned that the system could be a bit complicated and could cause issues.









Lexi’s design was one that considered unframed art work. It was a fun way to display canvas art in a flexible way. 172 KARUNGKARNI ARTS AND CULTURE CENTRE


BOWER STUDIO. alexia baikie 699258

Reflection and Applications Penny raised the issue of dirt. The soil and dust in Kalkaringi gets into everything, so having the art works being touched to spin them around could cause excess damage to the art.

Shalini Rautela

Shalini’s presentation was highlighted as being successful at representing the character of Kalkaringi to make it easier for the community to relate to.

HYPOTHETICAL MODULAR BOX DISPLAY KALKARINDJI Reflection and Applications It is important to represent your clients in your presentations to show that you understand your clients and give them confidence that you are going to be able to achieve their wishes.



4.0 Wurnkurr Social Club



SOCIAL CLUB CONVERSATIONS WITH PHIL Our first consultation and introduction to the Warnkurr Social Club happened with Phil the CEO of Gurindji Corp on the 23rd of March. The conversation with Phil began with all the concerns that come with the social club becoming closed because of COVID19. Phil raised that there are many deaths on the Northern Territory roads as a result of people driving out of town in search of alcohol. Reducing the deaths on the roads and keeping people in town with their families and jobs is a benefit of having the social club in Kalkaringi. The stopping of the one source of alcohol in the community will cause a flow of people out of town. With the club being closed right now the construction workers are not hanging around town, they will leave for the weekend and possibly longer to go to a town with a bottle shop. Gurindji Corp is a community enterprise that gets no hand outs or mining money, they make their own future. Gurindji Corporation plans to 176 WARNKURR SOCIAL CLUB

buy the social club so it can be under community control by June this year. However the purchase may be delayed because of the virus. Having the community corporation own the social club means that the money spent at the club stays in the community and can go towards community run programs and facilities as determined by the community. The hope for the social club is that is can represent Kalkaringi’s pride and heritage. The club used to be family friendly and have family nights but that function has stopped. It became too hard to manage the security with kids in those circumstances. At the Freedom Day Festival the club is the venue for some of the music and the food. It is an essential part of the experience. When the festival is run the alcohol is shut off, it becomes a place for food and toilets. There used to be a tennis court, that is something that is hoped to be re-purposed or revitalised to

help create the atmosphere of the family area. Phil stated that what is needed is stools, benches, shade, ping pong, bands, karaoke. The band equipment only needs to be basic with a microphone, drum set and guitarist. Other activities that could be run to build the community side of the social clubs character are breakfast for kids and activities during the day. It could offer a cafe type service with muffins and coffee. Reflection and Applications The focus of the information Phil is supplying us with about the brief for the project is centred around expanding the existing functions of the club to make it more welcoming to a wide range of people and a place to share the heritage of Kalkaringi. My design centres around the telling and sharing of stories of Kalkaringi new and old. The design sets the Warnkurr Social Club as a key destination for everyone to experience.

David Obrien


CONVERSATION WITH DOUBLE R We had the privilege of being able to chat to Rob Roy about the Social Club on the 26th of March. According to Rob Roy currently the operation of the Social Club is running smoothly. The staff at the social club want to be permanent and currently work on beautification unlike other staff and managers in the past. Rob Roy discussed with us the various areas and ideas that could be implemented in the design. His view is that the main concerns are for shade and rain protection such as the pavilions as all of the seating is outdoors. A larger idea that could be considered is upgrading the oval for the festival for use for AFL and cricket. For the basketball competitions the main finale court is usually the court in the park. But there is an idea that there could be a court at the club that could be the finale location with food and soft drink supplied. Rob Roy believes that the club would be used more if it had a non-alcohol section and it is a 178 WARNKURR SOCIAL CLUB

very positive change to the club. Live Music would be very important. Music is an important creative outlet and is a great community bonding. It would bring in lots of customers and also be great for visitors. Currently the pool tables are very popular and it is not often that they are free. More pool tables would allow more people such as more women to enjoy playing. Watching the football is a big concern in the community, everyone has a team and are big fans. The football is played on the TV on Thursday, Friday and Saturday but on these days the club closes before the game finishes. Currently the club is open Saturday 2pm5pm and on weekdays it was open 5pm-8pm. Extending the opening hours could create more problems or it could mean people could drink slower. The management of the club currently is that the managers make all of the decisions but the Council Committee can override any decision made by the managers if they see fit.

To get their license the club has to sell a meal and fries as well as alcohol. The club doesn’t want to be viewed as a pub, it has to be more. When there were nights that kids were allowed in the club there were problems with who was monitoring the kids. The staff security ended up having to look after the kids but it was not part of their job. There is also a conflict that a lot of the kids don’t want to actually go to the club because they can roam the town and hang out at the basketball court where the lights stay on without parental supervision. Reflection - 28th March This conversation was very informative and gave so many areas for development. I think it is still a little unclear for me the values of the club and what the new club will want to represent. With the children and family area will it be more of a restaurant style facility in the community, that provides people with food and company? Most of the suggestions RR has made are about increasing the opportunities for enjoyment and relaxation that people can have. rob roy



This document was to be used as a consultation document to share the ideas discussed in out precedents and get the communities response to the ideas. We structured the document as if it would be handed around the community and people could give feedback by responding to a point on the ranges that we provided that they related to best. For example whether the club should include more open spaces rather than closed. 180 WARNKURR SOCIAL CLUB

Reflection and Application We had a hard time understanding how we were meant to present our precedents to the community. Especially since we found very few that lined up with the same program as the Social Club. The document ended up looking quite confusing and not very inspiring with its ideas. This was a good learning moment for what not to do and how to engage with your audience.


idea open




Krakani Lumi, Taylor and Hinds Architects, North East National Park, Tasmania.

Ganalili Centre (previously Victoria Hotel), Roeburne, WA

spaces that are open for everyone to move through and see

spaces that are partially open to people, protected on some sides

spaces that are separate and secured, and private

the pavilion creates shelter to sit in on one side and open on the other to be able to see around

the lawn and pavilions are open to the public with 360° views



To help us develop a design for the Warnkurr Social Club, we would love to know what you think about these ideas. Email us here, or put a number next to each idea: 1 means the idea is important to you 2

Cubo de Totora pavilion, Archquid, Ecuador

the chairs and tables outside can't be moved from their spot

the base of the pavilion is fixed, but the sides can be opened up

the separate games room is closed off from the beer garden to create privacy and to not disturb other guests

what do you think??


Ganalili Centre, Roeburne, WA

Gunbalanya Sports and Social Club, NT

Proposed storage unit, Karungkarni Arts Centre unfixed structures can be moved around by anyone





10 means this idea is not important to you 9












PRECEDENT PRESENTATION WITH PHIL We presented our Consultation Document Version 1 that shared our precedent projects and ideas to Phil on the 26th of April. Phil had a lot of good feedback on our ideas. Moving pieces are not good, they cause more maintenance and time that the managers don’t have. The managers are usually a married couple and some times they are really invested and want to drive the club and others are less interested. So less need for cleaning, maintaining, fixing, locking up is better. The existing fence, the cage style is not good. But it is a good idea to screen off parts, not everything needs to be visible. The existing toilets could need some more screening, make it more private. The women’s is so open and uninviting. And the men’s the toilets are right beside the pool tables. This could be part of the reason that the pool tables are dominated by the men and the women don’t get a chance to play. The non - drinking area, this can be unfenced. If it is all really durable elements and furniture 182 WARNKURR SOCIAL CLUB

then there is no need to fence the space off. The non-drinking space wants to be a family space. Somewhere families can eat, but it doesn’t want to be a place where kids start to take over. The club is still somewhere adults go to relax and chill out. So this could mean a half basketball court is a better option. The club is an important interface to interact with visitors to Kalkaringi. Whether it be tourists, government representatives, business men and health workers everyone benefits from having conversations at the club. People tell their story and history and show the photos of Vincent Lingiari to visitors. Activities are organised for the following day to show people around and it encourages people to stay in Kalkaringi longer than they expected. This story telling should be supported, the club should tell the story of what Kalkaringi is about and its future. So having laser cut panels of art and gallery spaces for images. Events held at the Club these need to be displayed somewhere about what is happening or when such

as band times so that people can be aware and come watch or join in. The furniture was discussed and how everyone in the club have their spots. Everyone knows where they sit every time, so perhaps there can be some fixed furniture in places and movable furniture in others to adapt to changes. The fire-pit is pretty shabby, making this fire-pit a more enjoyable and attractive piece or the landscaping. Reflection and Applications Although we did get valuable information out of this consultation the conversation was fairly strained with Phil not being engaged by the presentation. On reflection we did not show that we understood the brief or display new exciting ideas for Phil to get behind. Phil outlines how valuable the Social Club is for business and engagement in the community with visitors. By having conversations at the club people stay longer and spend more time getting to know Kalkaringi. This is an area I am harnessing in my design, the ability of connections and story telling to lead to ongoing connection and action. The stories of Kalkaringi are so vast and intriguing that they should have a platform to enthral more visitors.

Phil Smith



After our conversation with Phil we went back and re-did our consultation document. We included more pages that displayed that we understood the brief and who was the target users of the space. We then based on our precedent projects drew sketches of what possibly elements of the club could function and look like that satisfy the brief. This document was more targeted showing how we think the club could work rather than the range of options for how the club could be designed. This meant 184 WARNKURR SOCIAL CLUB

we had reduced the amount of decisions the community and RR had to make instead we were asking for a reaction to what we showed. This method meant we had more inspiring ideas that directly placed the themes we chose from our precedents in the social club. This document resolved the issues that we found in the previous version and allows Rob Roy and Phil to have confidence in us that we understand what they want and are on the same page.


Local History

family / social

The walk off story cut into metal sheets

The People Who are the users of the space?

Interstate visitors

Visitors from nearby


121 Punmu and Parnngurr Health Centres WA

Adults Kids



Families together

open & closed

Semi-Closed Providing spaces with controlled privacy

Large screens or projections for everyone to see and hear

space is more private when inside

curved space gives shade

space is partly private when in the centre Social Club

A large screen or projector means many people can see the tv and football at the same time. And many speakers around the social club means many people can hear it.

Krakani Lumi Taylor and Hinds Architects, Mount William, TAS

space is less private near the opening

good views for events


PRECEDENT PRESENTATION WITH ROB ROY We had another conversation with Rob Roy on the 29th April to present our consultation document version 2. These are the thoughts that were discussed during that conversation. The first comment Rob Roy made was that the club is not a place that people race to get to get wasted. It is somewhere to go and chat with people. In the steel roof pavilions in the club currently people don’t sit under there on the hot days as the steel gets too hot and radiates the heat down so the shade is not worth it. That is why the old bastards corner is so loved, the shade there is created by the two trees. In the old social club the shades were created by chicken wire and spinifax and they would hose the spinifax down to get natural evaporative cooling. They were made in a simple arch shape for ease of construction. Maybe a mix of the traditional and modern to bring it together and tell a story. It currently looks like fort knox, the community wants it to become something people talk about, if people are on a road trip it becomes a key


place to visit. Across from the tennis court was, on the open plain, that was where the first settlement was after the walk off in the 60’s and 70’s. The club managers at the time of the walk off helped and protected the people from anyone coming after them. For this reason their house where people could seek refuge is to be included in the national heritage register. The house is still exactly the same as it was, not wanting to be touched by any of the community. Rob Roy spoke of getting a feel throughout the club, such as that seen in the Lazy Lizard Camp ground and the Adelaide River Motel. These two Northern Territory Bars host artefacts and general styling that takes you back in time kind of like an interactive museum exhibit. Rob Roy especially like the character that corrugated iron brings to the space. RR really liked the fence idea of Damien’s where iconic images and symbols are cut into steel panels used for the fence.

The area near the takeaway food could be used for story telling. Currently it just has notices of who is going to court and what the rules are, nothing inspiring instead demoralising. Rob Roy expressed the strained relationship between the community and the council. The location of the female toilets especially, being in the centre of the lawn it is shameful to walk to those toilets. He feels it is used as intimidation. Do not make anything look private, it can cause a lot of issues in the community. Everything needs to be open, to be sure everyone can be seen. The main concern is walls where people that aren’t meant to be together can hide behind. Rob Roy really liked the curved sheet metal bench in the Walk Off Pavilions. Kids size footy goals, ping pong and basket ball are all great ideas for entertaining the kids and making it a family friendly place. Reflection I was really inspired by the use of the spinifax in the shade pavilions. It is used as a natural evaporative cooling. If I could incorporate this into my design it would be very beneficial. 187

CONCEPT PRESENTATION This presentation we put together a document that combined our own concept diagrams and sketch ideas to ask specific question of RR. We proposed to him the idea of moving the entry to the social club away from the current entry to create one communal entry and then once already inside the club you divide and can go through security if you are wanting to enter the drinking side of the club. Rob Roy like this idea and did not have a problem moving the security box. Antoher idea that RR thought would work well in the social club is the provision of BBQ’s to cook food on within the club. He commented that he does not want the camping culture to die off, he wants to keep people feeling connected to the on country way of living. Another idea that we ran past RR was the investment of money into building a new separate building to the north that would cater to the non drinking side of the club. He thought that it would be a good use of money and could create good facilities to the non drinking side. Rob Rob also expressed that he did not like the 188 WARNKURR SOCIAL CLUB

idea of a trench in front of a fence to make the fence appear lower. He saw that this could be a big safety and cleanliness issue. We presented our ideas for using the spinifax in a modern way in the shade structures of the social club however RR had a concern. He had thought about the use of spinifax since our last conversation and he believes that no one would actually water it down and that it creates a fire risk if someone lighting a cigarette decided to set it alight. RR was also intrigued by the ideas to represent storytelling within the design for the club. He liked the idea of presenting story lines and wanted to get back to us with more ideas. Reflection and Application It was disheartening to hear that the spinifax idea was no longer viable to RR and could cause a safety risk. I was eager to bring back traditional passive environmental management, modern equivalents aren’t necessarily best.




garden and rocks to help create boundaries




sharing a fire between both sides



rethinking the fence

cooking area

new servery window

example of a possible 'cooking pavilion'

eating at the club

traditional building with modern technology - spinifex pavilions



“Making it not just a place about alcohol, but rather linking it into the broader community�

The Social Club is to become a place of connection for a wide range of people including families, constructions workers, visitors and guests. The Social Club is to become a place of more varied activity with the refurbishment of the court area, ping pong tables and live music.


The threshold between the drinking and non-drinking areas of the club needs to be carefully designed to not end up as the current fence is with a barbed wire topped fence. With Gurindji Corp finally owning the Warnkurr Social Club again the heritage, pride and character of Kalkaringi needs to be clear in the design. The Social Club is to be a key destination in the Northern Territory, ideally it would be a bucket-list item on many peoples road trips.

gemma border


The practical requirements: - A little stage that’s indestructible, with built-in equipment accessible on request - Second eating area for children - Shade - Seating - Table tops - Games (eg. playground/ping pong) - Servery accessible by both the drinking area and the children’s area

- Needs to be able to be managed by 2 people at once

- Security box

-Sign in

-Breath test


-Staffed by two people

- Outdoor area in existing club - People sit near the fence looking inwards

- In winter there is a bonfire in the middle

-“Old bastard’s corner”

- During Freedom Day Festival

- the club acts as toilets, meals, and non- alcoholic drinks throughout the festival

- Double gates toward oval open up

- People don’t usually hang around for

too long around the bar during freedom day festival





The existing plan for the social club consists of two wings of enclosed rooms with the food and drink being served from separate wings. The pool tables are centred between these two. The building has a significant focus towards the east with the west wall only having a single door to the seating area outside. The entry and security box is on the south boundary and directs patrons through to the queues for the bar. The area to the north and south of the building 196 WARNKURR SOCIAL CLUB

is used for storage and access is only permitted to staff. The current female toilets are located in the midway through the outdoor space along the north fence opposite a shade structure with picnic tables. In the centre there is an area fenced off with corrugated metal as a fire pit. A lot of furniture is arranged around the edge of the fence as that is where people to prefer to sit. It is only occasionally that people will sit at the tables under the shades.



I began my design exploration by focussing on the fence. The treatment of the fence can make or break the design. The fence needs to be secure yet transparent and visually permeable. The style of the fence as much as possible should not have the appearance of jail security fence or bars. The fence instead offers many opportunities for story telling, functionality, and character. I explored simply design tactics to begin with that would be constructable and cost effective such as steel louvres, panels of weld mesh or unequal steel angle fixed to a frame. Weld mesh if oriented with the steel fins angled vertically could be curved to a certain degree. This could be an effective way to bring curves into the design. Unlike curved walls the fence would be an achievable way to bring a more natural effect into the social club. 198 WARNKURR SOCIAL CLUB

Through my experience in the social club I have observed a common trait that the patrons of the club have. Commonly people sit around the edge of the fence line and look inwards into the centre of the club. To address this I explored the idea of the fence not only being the fence but also the shade and seating. In this way the fence become a part of the architecture of the social club and not just encircling it.


If the fence can be the shade structure how can this integrate with the interior of the club? How does the fence pavilion interact with pavilions not part of the fence? If you can put furniture and shade on the fence to the interior of the club why can you not also apply this to the exterior? If you treat the exterior of the fence as still part of the design then the social club not only benefits itself but the community. It also helps break down the otherwise shockingly direct division of space. 200 WARNKURR SOCIAL CLUB

In this sketch I explored how treating the entire fence as architectural shade would work. I do not like the effect at all. It looks too much like a colonnade which does not suit the Kalkaringi character or heritage. 201

INITIAL PROGRAM PLANNING My initial move in the planning of the spaces for the social club was to move the entry. I disliked the location of the original entry as it enters directly into the queues for the bar. For the design to restructure the values of the social club to show the new family and culture emphasis the entry should not direct you to the bar. Instead in relocating the entry to the west and opening up the western wall, the space between the two wings of the building create an axis that directs visitors and sight lines out towards a central mob fire that celebrates communal enjoyment of space. However how can you manage the security of the bar from the far west of the club? Would there need to be another security post further into the club? This design also explored relocating the food servery to the end of the north building to create one joined window rather than two to make it easier to manage. 202 WARNKURR SOCIAL CLUB

In this plan I have explored the idea of moving the security midway through the building to resolve the security of the bar issue. However this decision comes with its own issues. If the security is midway through the building it restricts the drinking patrons from reaching the pool tables and gallery and food servery. I have also tested the idea of making the end of the north building the small stage and secure storage. One issue however is that there is an existing established tree that provides significant shade and if the stage were to be located here it is likely it would be cut down. The other option of having the stage to the south however has many issues too. Can you still have the secure store within it? It would be more logical to keep buildings that need electricity together not independent. Is it too far away from the non drinking area to the north? 203

Here I started to design the details of Social club beginning with the fire pit. The fire pit was the centre of the my plan it was to be the core communal feature that you see on your way through the club. This fire pit I imagined would be large enough to have a seat wrapping around the shielded fire place. Perforated metal or weld mesh would protect the seat from logs rolling out of the fire or possible sparks. The fire would get very hot though so I wanted to design the seat to be deeper than normal so that when you sat down after the fire had been lit you would have to lean back considerably to be burned on the metal. 204 WARNKURR SOCIAL CLUB

To the left you can see my study of the structures that were built in the temporary camp during the walk off. Reading a handful of sand I found out that the one round structure was called the round house and was used to house guests such as the lawyers supporting them from Melbourne. I thought this use of circular motif could be a symbol of gathering and communal whole club spaces. Therefore the fire pit and stage would be circular in plan. In the sketch below I was testing out how to design the circular stage that still had storage of the band equipment and speakers but would not cause a safety issue by blocking views to behind the stage.

I thought if we couldn’t use spinifax on the pavilions maybe we could use it for the fence and get natural cooling that way. But how to design it so that it was secure but that whatever material held the spinifax together would not counter the cooling effect of the breeze through the wet spinifax.



In this design I tried to rationalise my plan by comparing the flow to nodes of activity within my design to the patterns of the artwork in the Karungkarni Art and Culture Centre. A lot of the artworks have a structure seen in the one above when painting bush plants or moments of gathering. They have multiple axis all meeting at a central node. I thought it was an interesting comparison but not effective or strong enough architecture. The pattern didn’t really fit with my design and put the non

drinking part of the social club on the fringes of the structure. In the plan to the left you can clearly see that I was focussing more attention on designing the drinking side than the non drinking side. Even expanding the drinking side into the space where the non drinking side was planned. It was time for a refocus on the purpose of the renovation of the club, to refocus the social club to be more family centred allowing places for everyone within the community. 207

After realising I had been focussing my attentions in the wrong place after David reminded us that this money for the project was to be used to expand the audience to the social club and the programs it offers not just renovate what exists. I went back to diagramming the program and restructured the design around the shared food, stage, fire and story telling programs. I then just 208 WARNKURR SOCIAL CLUB

to expand my thinking did a rough plan that just placed the shapes of the different programs in the diagram before onto an oval shape. This exercise although didn’t produce a practical plan helped me re-evaluate assumptions I had made in my mind about how the plan needed to be.

This plan was my attempt at then applying the same logic of the previous program diagramming to a plan. The feedback for this plan was that it was attempting to change too much of the existing building and building a large building to

the north. Both of these choices would use up a lot of the budget but was it worth it? Although in this plan I have extended with a space of equal size to the existing club I does not make that many opportunities for different programs and activities. 209


A very useful and productive exercise the tutors got us to undertake was to make some sketch models that tested out ideas that we had or explored the potential for different materials, forms and shadows. My first model was directly from an idea I had for constructing a pavilion. I was trying to get the waves and curves into the design with straight pieces. This black matting was to represent panels of spinifax stretched between beams. I 210 WARNKURR SOCIAL CLUB

did not like the result. It did not talk to me of Kalkaringi or elegance or curves. But it did start me thinking of getting curves into the fence. I thought that achieving a full fence of angled columns would be too expensive, too climbable and not visually transparent enough in the way that I wanted to build it. I then came up with this idea that had varying levels of visual transparency by having sections that would wave and different sections of weld mesh and perf.

I then explored how to get curves in sheets of material using one straight piece to keep it curved. This could be made with flat sheets of a slightly flexible material such as sheets of corten. This curved and straight structure strikes contrast between the organic form of a curve and the unnatural intensity of straight lines. The curve was intended to reflect the surrounding landscape with rolling hills giving the station the name wave hill. I explored the opportunities for different

shadows depending on how the form it arranged. I don’t want to apply this to my design in a purely aesthetic way, meaning I don’t want to make the building look this shape because that would require extra engineering that pretends to have a the elegance of this model. I want to apply this as a technique for the construction of forms such as in furniture and curve the corten to get enough strength to support someone on a stool. 211

In these sketch models I explored the same technique and form that the previous cardboard model used but with fly wire to represent perforated metal sheets. The overlapping perforated sheets already create unique and much loved shadows in Kalkaringi. By curving the perforated metal the shadows gain a new 212 WARNKURR SOCIAL CLUB

element of complexity. With the passing of the sun the shadows change and evolve becoming a dynamic element within the design. With the perforated metal/fly wire I explored having more curves than the single demonstrated in the cardboard model. This created a much

more dynamic form with varying heights of curves. It also changed the shadows dramatically. The moire effect can be seen not only in the wire but also in the shadows. This strategy should be used in a location that is going to get the best

shadows. If it used as the support under a table top its not being used to it best ability. It needs to be somewhere like a fence of vertical shades such as done on the big shadies. 213


Story Telling Moments and modes

The next strategy the tutors got us to undertake was to have us produce three concept diagrams that represent the core aims of our design. My set of concept diagrams are a progression. The first is an abstract depiction of different moments of storytelling through different 214 WARNKURR SOCIAL CLUB

Narrative of Story Telling

modes. The rid circles are stories told through yarn, the blue squiggles are stories told through symbolism and the yellow dots are artefacts that tell stories. The way I image them these story telling moments exist in a dreaming type landscape that can intersect with the physical landscape which is when the stories are told or

told in a linear time frame for how they occurred, they are experienced based on a variety of factors including what knowledge you bring to the occasion, where you have come from, where you are going, who you meet, what you see and what you observe. In the final concept you can see the story telling moments as underlaid in the physical space with the black lines and nodes being the flow within the social club arriving at different moments of interaction and activity in the club but also moments of story telling.

Experience of story telling moments in design

experienced. The second diagram depicts how one persons experience of these stories can occur. In a non linear overlapping fashion where bits of stories are told once or twice with each telling comes slightly different information. The stories are not

This concept drawing however is just the first iteration. I tweaked it for the final concept diagram as this first arrangement of the storytelling moments is based on the plan for the social club that I had at the time. Therefore how could it direct my design if it was created by my design. I have a habit of jumping when I think and skipping steps that explain further. George directed me to look to a step before my first concept diagram and diagram the many different ways that stories are told. Focussing on how stories are told directed me back to my design by creating spaces that celebrated and encouraged these different storytelling methods. 215


Site Plan showing access to Club

My first site plan was developed purely pragmatic as I had done with all previous studios, depicting the western idea of key locations and the paths from community to the social club. All it told you was how people get to the club and other information that you can find on Google maps. 216 WARNKURR SOCIAL CLUB

Site Plan Showing Direction to Surrounding stories

My second plan as suggest by George began to explore the stories around Kalkaringi. How I connected them however was by just drawing lines from the club to the direction of the stories. Immediately I felt this wasn’t a strong representation of the network of stories in the landscape or of my experience ;earning of them.

Site plan showing network of stories

In this third plan I have mapped the network of stories that interconnect throughout Kalkaringi The connections made between them are how I believe the stories connect and how I experienced the stories. This mapping can be done buy anyone because each person will have a unique experience of the stories and

different connections they can make based on their experience. Additionally many places of story would be left off my map as I am unaware of them or they are not available to me as non Gurindji and restrictions between female and male information. 217


perforated metal

rusted metal angle and sheets

abode hand made bricks


ruster corrugated metal


weld mesh

cocnrete coloured with earth


The different materials I choose to use are all grounded within the context of Kalkaringi. Each brings a level of symbolism to the design and ties it to the community and its history. The selection of the materials has allowed me to see more clearly how the design can come together. Designing in a 3d computer space can leave you feeling disconencted from the characted and reality of the building and Kalkaringi. Kalkraingi’s landscape is so unlike the pure white orthogonal models created in computer modelling. These materials each have significance to the community their history and are beloved in their use around town. 219


pool and games room

cook fires



pool room


mob fire

fence with openable panels


security mob fire

shade bar



In this plan I put an equal focus on the space provided for the non drinking areas as the drinking area with the non drinking area having perhaps a bit larger space. There is one communal entry and then there is an access to the drinking area from within the social club. One key area for discussion however is whether to fence or not fence the non drinking side of the social club. There are many reasons for both.

exterior fence securing the store of drinks and money, it instead becomes an internal fence that can be managed by security. The fence defines the area that is the social club therefore it clearly outlines which space is the responsibility of managers. For no fence:

For fence:

It allows the space to be used beyond the opening hours which are so few and increases the value of the design

It adds security to the buildings and their openings

It connects the social club to the surrounding landscape

There can be loose furniture as it will be locked within the fence in closing hours

The non drinking side of the club is not restricted by area as costs of fencing the area do not exist

It makes both spaces equal when you cross the fence you are within the club. There is no disparity between a fenced space and not fenced space.

It is closer to the experience of other drinking venues in the Northern Territory that are open and don’t have a security fence around the drinking area. It makes for a more open and welcoming venue.

The security around the stage and the dividing fence need not be so intense as it is not the


This entry has a curved fence on the right as you enter that has perforated metal sheets that are cut in undulating patterns representing the surrounding landscape. On the left the low wall is 222 WARNKURR SOCIAL CLUB

made of hand made bricks and offers a place to perch or sit until the club opens. The entry guides you through into the club under a welcoming shade structure.

This is the design for the new pool and games room in the non drinking side of the club. It is constructed with concrete block work to fit with the existing social club. The verandah to this building has the wavy perforated metal under

the eave. At this angle the perforated metal wont make the most shadows, possible none at all as the sun would have to be coming from the south. I also do not like how heavy and closed the building is. I do not like the use of the concrete blocks. 223

This is an idea for the shade structures along the fence. They are nice but I don’t feel they are unique enough to Kalkaringi, they could be anywhere as they don’t talk specifically to the character of Kalkaringi. I have also gone a bit 224 WARNKURR SOCIAL CLUB

too clumsy with the structure, it could be built without the extra bracing columns. I also feel the perforated metal could be used in a more effective way than just woven through the fence.

This is an idea for the fire pit in front of the stage. I have no idea how to design the stage at this point. I know how it needs to function but how it

presents in this sketch is really bland. I also want to resolve further the fence so that people can view the stage well from the drinking area. 225


I returned my attention to the fence again after the mid sem presentations of my sketches. I wanted to resolve the fence as something simple but not plain or too repetitive. Ideas were that the fence could be made of 4 different height pieces that could be offset to two different positions. This creates an interesting fence with a simple design. Where the fence curves create interesting shadows too, getting deeper and more transparent in different places.


I also explored how to get the stories of the surrounding landscape to be present in the experience the club. This idea was that it would be an interactive process where as the concrete is curing members of the community can come and print paths in the concrete as they relate to them.

In this screen grab it is visible how I was stuck with the design of the roof for the stage and new food servery. The roofs are both just simple pitched roofs. These were both trying too hard to match the existing building rather than stand out as the new extension of the social club. Another


issue with this is the security is too close to the Layout stage. This would cause an issue with the flow of people right in-front of the stage and the ideal viewing space so that they could get through to the drinking side. SKETCH DESIGN DRAWINGS

SCALE 1:100 @A3

DATE: 25/5/20




Bower Studio | Melbourne School of Design University of Melbourne Victoria Australia 3010 Dr David O'Brien 03 8344 8761 |



CLIENT Gurindji Aboriginal Corporation Buntine Highway Kalkaringi Northern Territory Australia 0852 Phil Smith 0406 224 866



Layout SKETCH DESIGN DRAWINGS SCALE 1:125000, 1:100 @A3

DATE: 25/5/20 ISSUE -B


Instead of having the wavy perforated mesh interweaving through the columns under the eave I have instead moved them to be et the edge of the roof line as the eave. They will create a nice transition from full sun to part shade and into full shade. They will also have a greater opportunity to create shadows. Using the same structural language as the wave hill walk off

pavilions I have chosen to use EA steel columns and beams in a portal frame structure. This creates many unique opportunities in the design. The EA are the perfect shape and angle to fix the perforated metal sheets to in order to get them to bend. It also creates a gutter that the water can flow off and form little rivulets off the end. 229

Here I have tested out ideas for displaying artwork, artefacts, images and shelves for putting drinks or food while you play pool. The modular elements mean that the space can be curated to the desires of the community and the space.


Here I have sketched an idea to have door panels that have laser cut art works into them. This provides another opportunity for the stories of the community to be shown in the architecture of the building.

This sketch as exploring ideas for how to develop the BBQs we constructed in the park. The BBQs in the park had no space for putting food or pots that weren’t to be on the fire. In this sketch I explored having two taller blocks that could double as tables for cooking items or as seats for people accompanying the cook. It is a lot of concrete however.

This sketch explores how I have developed the cardboard sketch model into a functional seat. The base of the seat is constructed of concrete and the backrest is a sheet of corten. There are cut outs on the corten to allow the concrete beside to act as a side table. This steel will be extremely hot however and need to have another layer of a different material to make it comfortable.





The Warnkurr Social club is a place of stories, where stories are heard, stories are told and future stories are created. The narrative of this experience is rarely linear and curates a unique experience with each visit for each person 234 WARNKURR SOCIAL CLUB

One person having a yarn to a group

A yarn while doing something

Stories can be told through a yarn in many different scenarios. Each yarn story will be slightly different

Private yarn between to people


A group yarn



One person reading a story from words and images


Stories can be told through created objects and artefacts that are placed in the landscape or in buildings

Someone telling the story inspired by the image


Stories can be told through symbolism embedded into architecture and built forms

One person reading a story from words and images



CONTEXT PLAN In Aboriginal culture stories are held in the landscape. In this context plan I have mapped the stories around Kalkaringi that I am aware of. This plan shows the rich and complex landscape of stories from various times that are throughout Kalkaringi. This mapping of experience of stories can be done at any scale by any individual or group as each mapping with be unique to the specific significances in each persons experience. 239





In my design I have embedded the stories of the surrounding landscape into the Warnkurr Social Club. Each of these paths through out the social club point to locations of significance that hold many stories. Each of the paths have a marker at the end of them indicating which story they are pointing to. These markers are identical to a visual storyline that is present at the entry of the club. Each of these stories can be read in brief on the story line or a visitor may ask a local in the club what they mean. It is in this second instance that the story paths have the greatest value. They create the opportunity to connect with people around you that otherwise you may not have spoken to. It necessitates engagement in order to benefit the greatest. 241


17 F 5


7 4





1 2 15


9 M



10 11







9 3



15 16




WARNKURR SOCIAL CLUB PLAN The design of the social club centres around moments of storytelling. It is divided with the fenced off drinking area that encloses the existing club. To the North West is the active area separating the loud children from the main outdoor space of the drinking side of the club to the South East. The new pool and games room offers more opportunities for members of the community such as the women to enjoy social games while also watching and listening to the footy. To the east there are new cook fires that can be used to BBQ your own dinner with food purchased at the club. Offering a more engaged and on country dining experience that was desired in consultations. The main gathering space for both the drinking and non drinking sides of the club centres around the stage and mob fires. Around the club there are a variety of different seating opportunities that ranges from large group seating to private two person seats. The character of Kalkaringi and the Gurindji people is throughout the design through the choice of materials and a multitude of opportunities to display artwork and images.




The entry to the social club is marked by a large visual story line along the fence. This story line shows a general overview of the history of Kalkaringi from Vincent Lingiari through to the present freedom day festival and Kalkaringi basketball team. In between the images there is opportunity to write short descriptions about each moment in the story. 245



Opposite the new servery window in the north of the kitchen is a shaded dining area. This is placed to have a clear view of the basketball court, climbing wall and BMX track. This is a place of family gatherings large or small. To the right there is also direct views into the pool and projector room past the large door panels with local artwork laser cut into them.




The exterior of the games room is marked by large sliding door panels that are carved with artwork of three local artists. On the ground there are paths of stories heading many directions. The most significant story is shown in the path that parallels the building running just inside the base of the columns. This matches the direction of the Walk Off Track. To the south past the cook fires is Jinparrak and to the north is the hand off site. The undulating perforated metal sheets reflect the landscape around Kalkaringi that inspired the station to be named Wave Hill Station. The EA structure talks to the Wave Hill Walk Off pavilions and the steel frames structures that the track mob lived in on the station.











The interior of the games room provides many opportunities to display local artwork, images and trophies that can be updated as new events and art is created. The open air building contains insulation and a ceiling lining that keeps the radiant heat from entering the space through the corrugated metal roof.



section SKETCH DESIGN DRAWINGS SCALE 1:19.54, 1:13.33, 1:2.38 @A3






2000 mm

DATE: 18/6/20 ISSUE -B






The central gathering space of the club includes a mob fire with fixed seating, a small stage with secure equipment and cook fires. The opportunity to be able to be actively enjoying the club and not sitting eating and drinking what ever is provided to you is a key part of the design. In the cook fire area it provides the opportunity to cook, teach kids to cook, to cook using traditional bush tucker and continue to practice parts of their culture at the club.




The stage can be viewed from both the drinking and non drinking sides of the club. A fence near the stage can be lowered during a performance and the raised again for security. The experience is a communal and brings the whole club together in celebration of the music.



QUIET CONTEMPLATION At the west on the existing social club the building has been opened up with extra doors to reveal a quiet outdoor space. With the story line fence wrapping around one corner of the space the front of the club contains few seats including the private yarn seat. This has been designed to only fit two people for private yarns to occur. This end of the club has the best view of the sunset and with large doors the sunset can now be seen through from the main outdoor space near the stage.


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(2020). In My Blood It Runs. Bonsai Film Pilger, John, (screenwriter,) & Lowery, Alan, (film director.) & Network Releasing (Firm) & Dartmouth films (Firm) (2013). Utopia : an epic story of struggle and resistance. Secret Country Films : Distributed by Antidote Films, Australia P. Smith, personal communication, March, 23, 2020. P. Smith, personal communication, April, 26, 2020. Unknown (2014). Yolngu boy. Kanopy Streaming, [San Francisco, California, USA] Royal Australian Institute of Architects. Victorian Chapter (1996). Architect Victoria. Revaluing Heritage, summer 2020 Victorian Chapter, Royal Australian Institute of Architects, Melbourne R. Roy, personal communication, March, 26, 2020. R. Roy, personal communication, April, 29, 2020. R. Roy, personal communication, May, 14, 2020. Toohey, Paul (2008). Last drinks : the impact of the Northern Territory intervention. Black Inc, Melbourne Yunkaporta, T. (2019). Sand Talk: How Indigenous Thinking Can Save the World. Melbourne, Victoria: The Text Publishing Company.