Tangentyere Design traces its beginnings to the mid 1970s, when architect Julian Wigley from the then Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Housing Panel began to provide design advice to Town Campers eager to establish their own housing and community facilities. Walter Dobkins became Tangentyere Council’s first full time architect when the Housing Panel was terminated in 1977. The 1980s saw a flourishing of Town Camp houses under the guidance of Jane Dillon and Mark Savage. Since then Tangentyere Council has enjoyed a rich variety of architects providing direction and leadership as the practice has grown over the years.
The firm established itself as a registered business in 1999, and as a fully registered architectural company in 2006, one of few Aboriginal-owned architectural practices in Australia.
Coughlan, Frances, Aboriginal Town Camps and Tangentyere Council: The Battle for Self-Determination in Alice Springs, Master of Arts thesis in Aboriginal Studies, School of Humanities, La Trobe University, 1991.
Heppell, M. and Wigley J., Black Out in Alice: A History of the Establishment and Development of Town Camps in Alice Springs, The ANU Development Studies Centre, Monograph No 26, 1981.
Memmott, Paul, The Development of Aboriginal Housing Standards in Central Australia: The Case of Tangentyere Council, 1990.