Rhiannon Brownbill

University of Technology Sydney

Burudi Gurad, Burudi Ora (Critical Spatial Relationalities of Care).
In Caretaking Relations, Not American Dreaming Kim TallBear stipulates that “Indigenous frameworks of relationality … [are] explicitly spatial narratives of caretaking relations”. Spatial webs of intimacy and memory that connect the human body to all the living: non-living entities of the Land. Spatial webs that are “… relentlessly erased when the extractive nation-state continues to be [actualised] …”.

Therefore, this project asks, within an urban framework and collaborating with local Aboriginal knowledges of Country, how can architecture create healthcare spaces that assert the complex relations of Country, knowledge, community and culture as fundamental practices of care alongside western medicine?

Located on the island of Memel (Goat Island, Sydney Harbour), the project was conducted through a ground-up research and design methodology alongside local D’harawal eora Elders and Knowledge Keepers (all Traditional Custodians of the site). As a non-Indigenous student, entering an industry dominated by non-Indigenous professionals, this project is defined by this emerging methodology.

Memel is Aboriginal land recently returned to local peoples and this project explores how, under the consent of Traditional Owners, non-Indigenous architects can follow local protocols to design with site and create architecture that is fully responsive to local knowledges, ecologies and Country.