The concept of the ‘Indigenous cultural centre typology’ is at a point of significant change, initiated by the need to find and express a more relevant functional and cultural purpose within contemporary society. This study investigates the potential for the integration of localised Indigenous cultural forms and expressions into a specific architectural design, thereby engaging with the concept of ‘living culture’; and in so doing, contributing to a redefinition of ‘Indigenous cultural centre typology’.
It is conducted through the presentation, and subsequent analysis, of a hypothetical, design research proposal for a new Indigenous youth cultural centre, situated within the inner-Brisbane locality of Kurilpa.
The thesis considers a range of issues associated with the current theoretical and critical discourse on both the subject of culture, interaction and Aboriginality, together with their associated inclusion within the spatial form and function of ‘cultural architecture’. This is specifically examined in relation to the expression of Aboriginality within a contemporary and urban context.
The design for a new Indigenous youth cultural centre is presented and considered within the framework of the analytical research. The discussion demonstrates the potential for such architecture to reflect and continue the relationship between localised Indigenous culture and gathering, which is argued as being critical in strengthening Indigenous cultural forms and expression.
The thesis illustrates the possibilities resulting from the redefinition of the Indigenous ‘cultural centre model’. It illustrates a new typology that can act as a functional architectural model that is culturally relevant to Indigenous communities. This is achieved by the facilitation of the ongoing dynamics of cultural and social interactions and exchange that are so critical to Aboriginality.