Taylor Knights with Dr. James Carey and the Willum Warrain Aboriginal Association

Referencing Sir Roy Ground’s open-air courtyards in the original design of the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV), this architecture and landscape installation comprises two key design elements: a body of indigenous plants and a body of water. Referring to the inland salt lakes in Victoria, pond[er] highlights the scarcity and political implications of water as a natural resource. The project includes beds of Australian wildflowers that bloom at different times throughout the installation, seeking to highlight the beauty, precariousness, and temporality of our natural ecology.

Envisioned as a space that becomes part of the NGV garden rather than a separate architectural object, pond[er] invites visitors to move into the installation through an accessible walkway, arriving at the pink pond where they can wade within. Through a slow engagement with pond[er], it is hoped that visitors project into the future with positive intentions, encouraging a custodianship and care of our local ecologies.

pond[er] directly addresses the current ecological adversities through an architectural and landscape response that touche the ground lightly, using water and flora as its core materials. It promotes water systems custodianship, education, and awareness of traditional foods through local, edible floras.

A truly democratic and accessible scheme, pond[er] raises awareness and issues for other creative practitioners, and the public at large, to think about how to positively live, work and play moving into the future. It is hoped that through pond[er]’s conceptual thematic, and its initial use and then re-distribution of ethically sourced materials to various Landcare, indigenous and community groups, that these techniques and processes might influence future generations of practitioners to think through similar ways of working and designing in, and for the world.


Finishes: Safety flooring, Terra Firma Industries.

Photography: Tom Ross (Image 1, 2, 3), Derek Swalwell (Image 4)