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Walking with Kaurna at Morialta

Mukanthi, Kaurna for ‘play, celebrate’ is the name of the nature play space at Morialta Conservation Park.

Officially opened in September 2017 Mukanthi was created by playground designers Peter Semple from Peter Semple Landscape Architects and Simon Hutchinson from Climbing Tree, with the support of the Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources, and in collaboration with Kaurna Elders and artist Allan Sumner from Aboriginal Contemporary Arts.

The location is steeped in Kaurna history and culture with the predominant play spaces reflecting traditional seasonal movement through the area, and acknowledging the creatures and cultural practices relevant to that part of Kaurna Country. Enriching the Mukanthi experience are Allan Sumner’s wood and rock carvings and objects scattered throughout, each holding particular significance to the area.  

The hour-long workshop begins with a mat-time learning circle with Kaurna presenters covering the relevance of the main play pieces at the site, seasonal movement through Morialta, the creation and use of traditional tools, artefacts, sedges for weaving and finishes with ochre face painting, turns wearing the life sized wirltu (wedge tailed eagle) wings and, the ‘Look for Me’ challenge (finding the 12 carved symbols around the park).