Identity Bricks

Integrated into the structural columns of Building 189, the Identity Bricks serve as a creative recognition of this site as an Indigenous place with a continuing and diverse Indigenous presence.

About the Identity Bricks

The Identity Bricks Project invited Indigenous students, staff and alumni to share and embed their cultural stories and journeys in a permanent installation on the Parkville campus.

The bricks symbolise reciprocity and mutual exchange related to working on Wurundjeri Country. Through this exchange, participants acknowledge the gifts they have received from Wurundjeri Country and its custodians, and gift something of their story, Country or community in return.

The project is a culmination of the combined efforts of the Student Precinct Project team, Murrup Barak Melbourne Institute of Indigenous Development, Wilin Centre for Indigenous Arts and Cultural Development and the wider Indigenous community at the University of Melbourne.

Please click on the images below to learn more about each identity brick and the cultural stories behind them.

1. Keens Curry Tins – Anonymous
2. Clapping Sticks – Jon Watling, Wiradjuri
3. Sandalwood and earth – Darren Clinch, Badimia Yamatji
4. Honer blues harmonica – James Howard, Jaadwa
5. Sculpted turtle – Marcia Langton, Yiman and Bidjara
6. Painted stethoscope – Cam Raw, Lyluequonny (Palawa)
7. Painted stone and AFL card – Yemurraki Egan, Yorta Yorta, Wemba Wemba and Gunditjamara
8. Thick bark – Brittney Andrews, Kaniyang, Noongar
9. Torres Strait Islands flag and dugong – Matthew Starr, Meriam Mir/Kala Lagaw
10. Yothu Yindi : The Tribal Voice Album cassette – Kirsten Hausia, Badimaya Yamatji
11. Woven Earrings – Kayla Clinch, Badimaya Yamatji
12. Manna Gum Leaves – Craig Hunter Torrens, Wehlubal, Bundjalung
13. Eucalyptus leaves – Charlie Miller, Kanolu and Gangulu
14. Square fur armband – Naome Cummins, Stolen Generation
15. Photograph of siblings – Narida Yeatman-Morgan, Yorta Yorta
16. Kulaps – John Wayne Parsons, Yuggerabul/ Narangawal/Gitabal man from southeast Queensland. Maluligal (Western Nation) and Kemer Kemer Meriam (Eastern Island Nation) of Torres Strait Islander
17. Emu feather – Marcia Langton, Yiman and Bidjara
18. Sticks, leaves and feathers – Michael Cooper, (Grew up Ngunnawhal,mob is Awabakal/Worimi)
19. Small rocks – Ethan Savage, Kaantju, Girramay, Badu Island
20. Paintbrush – Tiriki Onus, Yorta Yorta and Dja Dja Wurrung
21. Dugong bobbin – Ash Perry, Goenpul Quandamooka
22. Abalone shells – Jessica Clark
23. Earth in Jar – Darren Clinch, Badimia Yamatji
24. Photograph – Mikaylah Lepua, Palawa

Identity Bricks Participant Videos

Some of the participants share their stories below.

Dugong Bobbin – Ash Perry, Goenpul Quandamooka Faculty of Fine Arts and Music

Painted Stethoscope – Cam Raw, Palawa Tutor in Veterinary and Agricultural Sciences

Manna Gum Leaves – Craig Hunter-Torrens, Wehlubal, Bundjalung Associate Lecturer

Yothu Yindi Cassette – Kirsten Hausia, Badimaya Yamatji Strategic Projects Coordinator

Sculpted Turtle and Emu Feather – Professor Marcia Langton, Yiman, Bidjara Professor & Associate Provost

Woven Earrings – Kayla Clinch, Badimaya Yamatji Project Officer & BA Student


Thank you to the Indigenous staff, students and alumni who generously contributed a personal object to this project, this installation could not have been completed without your participation.

This appreciation is also extended to the Wilin Centre for Indigenous Arts and Cultural Development, Murrup Barak Melbourne Institute for Indigenous Development, and Kane Constructions for their ongoing support of the Identity Bricks project.