Slow Recovery

Master of Architecture
Semester 1, 2021

Studio leader(s)

Two fires, three places, diverse local narratives.

A cyclical phenomenon rather than a linear process, disaster recovery stands to be a subjective undertaking and lived experience that is highly variable for local people and the decentralised communities they align themselves with, in a place and time.

This research-led studio brings to life three discrete projects that are part of the ensuing recovery of three places affected by the 2019-2020 bushfire complex that occurred across East Gippsland / Gunaikurnai Country and other contested aboriginal lands.

Together with Gunaikurnai Land and Waters Aboriginal Corporation (GLaWAC), Genoa Town Committee (GTC) and Mallacoota and District Recovery Association (MADRA), we will be ‘co-creating’ an outdoor cultural performance space and two townscape reimaginations with each respective grassroots organisation.

Our assistance of these partners through the community engagement strategies and design work generated in this paired studio-studies unit will be supported by a week of fieldwork in East Gippsland. This will include leading the facilitation of co-creation workshops for these projects, cultural and environmental knowledge sharing with local partners, and deep self-driven site analysis.

The fieldwork will also intersect with the Open House Melbourne Waterfront program as part of Melbourne Design Week where there will be opportunities to share our work with broader regional communities. This studio is a “sequel” to the Rethinking Regional Recovery (RRR) studio and intentionally transitions from the theoretical and speculative nature of RRR’s outcomes, into a highly practice embedded mode during this semester. It is acknowledged that the themes of RRR may be unfamiliar to some, however a detailed archive of guest talks, workshops and readings are available from last year in order to accelerate your thinking heading into and during this studio.

This studio is paired with the studies unit (Co)realise, which is a practical deep dive into the nuances of participatory approaches towards architectural design.