Building and facilities

The Centre for Aboriginal Studies (CAS) building is located centrally on Curtin’s Bentley Campus, and provides a familiar and welcoming place for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students to drop in at any time.

Student sitting at computer in resource centre

Student resource centre and common room

Our student resource centre is a designated space for Indigenous students to study. Printing, computers and study spaces are available.

Outside view of the Centre for Aboriginal Studies building

Building design

Unlike most other buildings on campus, the centre is circular in design. This important feature echoes the Centre for Aboriginal Studies logo – a goanna, or karda in the local language, curled in a circular shape to represent the continuity of life, as well as unity and equality. The design of the centre functions as a model of Aboriginal self-determination. Built from wood and stone, ochre in colour, and flooded with warm natural light, the CAS building complements the friendly and informal atmosphere created by staff.

Colourful tile mosaic on the floor of the Centre for Aboriginal Studies lobby

The Centre’s mosaic

When you walk into CAS one of the first things you’ll notice is the huge, circular mosaic on the floor. The mosaic portrays the many different Aboriginal tribal groups coming together in celebration around a central meeting place. The mosaic was developed from an award-winning painting by the late Joan Martin, an Aboriginal artist from the Murchison area who sadly passed away in 2008. The mosaic celebrates community, diversity and knowledge.

Flags on the ceiling of the Midgegoroo Meeting Place

The Midgegoroo Meeting Place

Our main lobby is dedicated to the memory of Nyungar elder, Midgegoroo. The fight for freedom and equality embodied in the life and death of Aboriginal resistance leaders like Midgegoroo and his son Yagan epitomises the struggles of oppressed cultures across time, and inspires us to work towards a vision of a world where all people are free and equal on their own terms.

Since the lobby is the main circulation space and also the heart of the Centre, the Midgegoroo Meeting Place is used to hold exhibitions, functions and special ceremonies.