The Precinct's Indigenous design approach

The New Student Precinct Project is proud to be contributing to the University’s elevated Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP 3) as a signature project.

With the Precinct becoming the future new home of the Melbourne Institute for Indigenous Development, Murrup Barak, a commitment to embedding Indigenous design and knowledge systems throughout the Precinct is being realised.

Don't Hold a Drop of Water, Artwork by Pierra Van Sparkes, 2018
Don't Hold a Drop of Water, 2018
Peirra Van Sparkes
Photography and Digital Media

As part of this, Indigenous Architect Jefa Greenaway and the team at Greenshoot Consulting have held a series of workshops with Indigenous students, staff and Traditional Owners and Elders in 2018, to ensure their voices are reflected in the Precinct design.

An online student survey was also shared with the University’s Indigenous students to capture their thoughts and ideas around the Indigenous design approach being undertaken by the New Student Precinct Project. Ninety-three students responded to a series of statements in the survey, that related to the four Indigenous pillars of engagement defined in the Project’s Indigenous Engagement Strategy: Connection to People, Connection to Country, Living History and Memory and Art and Artefact (images below courtesy Greenshoot Consulting).

Responses, ideas and reflections gathered through these culturally responsive stakeholder engagements in 2018 and 2019 will inform the design team’s approach to embedding the Indigenous narrative and design as the Project transitions into the detailed design stage.

Pierra Van Sparkes is a Kulin country based Pibbulman artist and student at the Victorian College of the Arts. Pierra's work was on display at the Outdoor Gallery in 2018. The Outdoor Gallery provides students with a permanent creative space and a platform for amplifying the voices of our Indigenous Students through art.