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  • Designing with Country

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“Country is a piece of my spirit that gives me peace”

— Richie Allan, Ngunnawal Knowledge Holder

“To know me is to breath with me. To breath with me is to listen deeply. To listen deeply is to connect. It is the sound. The sound of deep calling to deep. Dadirri – The deep inner spring inside us. We call on it and it calls on us……..I believe that the spirit of Dadirri that we have to offer will blossom and grow. Not just within ourselves. But within our whole nation” — Dr Miriam-Rose Ungunmerr Baumann AM

ck architecture recently commenced our reconciliation journey, through the establishment of our Reflect RAP, through this process we are exploring what ‘Designing with Country’ means, it’s processes and opportunities. We do recognise that the foundation is to authentically ‘connect to Country’ – through listening, observing, and participating.

Our focus thus far has been on our foundation, engaging with Ngunnawal Country – where we work, live and play. This has been achieved through cultural awareness courses, walks on Country and informal chats with Ngunnawal Elder Aunty Violet and Ngunnawal Knowledge Holder Richie Allan. The sharing of their culture, values, language, stories and seeing the land, flora, fauna, waterways and sky through their eyes has deepened our understanding of this place and what caring for it entails.

Our journey so far…….

With every project ck architecture undertakes, we acknowledge that the site is on the lands of First Nations People – ‘On Country’.

ck architecture is committed to initiating Design Stories from connecting to Country. This approach to design can only be achieved through partnerships with Traditional Custodians throughout the life of the project. At the core is us being present and listening. So when we design (put pen to paper), we thoughtfully consider how and why we are modifying this place – do our actions benefit this place? Overlaid with this is making tangible the indigenous culture, values, knowledge and language of this place through the built environment and place-making.

ck architecture recognises that the knowledge and stories shared are not our own, with permission we are a vessel for passing these stories on in a respectable and meaningful way.

We thank Traditional Owners Aboriginal Corporation (TOAC) for guiding our understanding of First Nations perspectives, histories and culture and Deadly Djinjama for sharing their knowledge in modelling how we work respectfully with Country.

Path not yet travelled………

ck architecture acknowledges that specific projects – delivering services and facilities for Indigenous communities or on significant sites – that involve Indigenous people and knowledge needs to be Indigenous led. For these projects ck architecture will work in partnership with an Indigenous Architect/Indigenous Spatial Planer/Indigenous Cultural Designer to deliver the project, adhering to a Co-Design approach and workflow process with the client group.