Multicultural Suburbia Exegesis
I first met Thomas Barker during the second St Kilda Arts Alive art crawl in May 2018. I’ve also interviewed him for a newspaper article that I write. I have discovered that Thomas is a committed artist who has an insatiable thirst for knowledge and how to use that knowledge for the betterment of the Planet. I managed to catch up with Tom during the third art crawl in September 2018 and this is what he has to say.
…Standard Australian suburban housing has underrepresented the influx of recent migrants to Australia since the relaxing of the immigration policy in the 1970’s. Single separate dwelling represents a large portion of residential housing within Australia. There is no physical evidence that builders make any considerable effort to design for these ‘minority’ groups. High rise construction has proven an inadequate alternative. This research hopes to glean; aesthetic, planning, and social hierarchy lessons evident within the vernacular of major recent migrant groups, then to identify plausible design outcomes for Melbourne suburbia if the origin-vernacular of these groups had been used to inspire the urban landscape. This research will take a selection of recent migrant cultures, explore their traditional dwellings, urban fabric, and propose an appropriate vernacular.
By Thomas Barker