The Draftery fig. 02 - Narrative Exhortations (PREVIEW)

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The Draftery

fig. 02 - Narrative Exhortations

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The Draftery




5x5 17. 29. 41. 53. 65.



INDEX 79. 80. 81. 82. 83.






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The Draftery


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The Draftery



hile, traditionally, architecture’s role merely concerns that of inhabitation, we now understand that the architect’s work has the ability to be a cultural form, capable of engaging a larger and more distant public. It isn’t to say that architecture’s established and basic functions are to be forgotten, but we propose an augmentation to the accepted norm: to be merely sheltered from the rain is no longer adequate ; architecture must also act as a cultural determinant. We re-imagine the architect’s artifacts as new models for public engagement, carrying with them the capacity to not only call for action, but to propose a new reality, serving as pedagogical devices that reinvent new possibilities. The normalcy of the discipline is challenged, opposing a sense of complacency of contemporary practice.

Solidifying The Draftery’s intent, in this issue we turn our gaze to different modes of architectural production, featuring works by architects, artists, and writers alike. We look at how architectural ideas are manifested on a site not made of dirt, sand, or water— how architecture is represented not as

spatial artifacts, but as graphic objects. We examine narrative as an organizing principle in works that act as public exhortations—whether political or ideological in nature, or whether they simply unveil hidden meanings behind everyday objects.

THE INARTICULATE CRY Athanasiou Geolas A Definition of Architecture t seems ironic that the importance of the assumption representations are real is so indefensible or irrelevant when considered in the context of the production of buildings. Despite the popularity of various avant-garde paper-architects over the last few hundred years, the building of buildings appears the most apt definition of an architect’s profession. But the disunity between so called paperarchitects and architects in general is the result of a cultural focus on products over production. Focusing on the most public products is an easy way to define any profession; however, the architect Adolf Loos presents a radically different kind of definition: one in which products are necessary precursors to, but certainly not the sole substance of architecture.


Loos wrote that the first act of architecture was the tomb.1 He makes this argument by telling a story about a man walking through the woods. At some distance from the city, the man passes a mound of dirt on the ground and pauses to contemplate it. The mound is roughly one meter wide and two meters long; and at a certain ineffable moment the traveler realizes that someone has been buried here.

This only provides a situation and not a definition. There is, in fact, nothing which could define a professional (much less product-oriented) practice. For Loos, architecture is contingent upon a certain amount of awareness: there is a traveler walking through the woods, who may or may not notice a mound of dirt, and who, as a result of the presence of this inert mass, may notice both the labor expended in producing it and the size of a human body. As a result of cultural conventions surrounding death and burial, this man realizes that a person has died and that he is buried here. Loos finishes his narrative-definition with, “that is architecture.” But what is this “that”: the material, the cultural expectation, the presence of labor, the scale of a human body, or the realization of all of this? It is significant that Loos’s “definition” of architecture appears as a narrative. Rather than offering a series of objective or conceptual constraints— rather than focusing on the role of production or professionalism or even history—Loos offers a man’s experience as he interacts with the world. Because of this, the focus of architecture becomes the lives that build and fig. 02

The Draftery surround it. And as a story, you can identify with its characters and align the experience with your own life and memories; it is a definition that opens itself to infinite interpretations. A Definition of Representation nlike Daedalus, Icarus is not lucid. Icarus’s freedom is not the self-conscious act of representing (of constructing) the world around him. Icarus is as unaware as a child at play, exploring the full extents of his imagination.2 If he were within a representation, he would not know it; for Icarus there is only the reality of present embodied experience. Spellbound by the power of his imagination, he lives within a mysterious prison—a prison of unknown limits; he is enmeshed within a unified world that can only exist in the present. In contrast, Daedalus lives in the space between the past and the present, the present and the future—the gap between the imagination and the actual world beyond its limits—always attempting to subvert the latter with the former. And it is this subversion which called for the labyrinth in the first place; built as a prison for the Minotaur, it is artifice built to house the excess of artifice.


Founding the palace above, the labyrinth is a performative space underscoring King Minos’s authority; it is the space of presentation that absorbs

all transgression and excess meaning in order to project an external message. Architecture, archive, monarch, and hierarchy all share the same root: archcomes from the Greek very meaning ‘to rule’; ruling as an act of authority, as an act of drawing, and by extension, as an act of measuring—taking account of present experience and inscribing it into a document (a representation). When Daedalus constructs a passage out of the labyrinth allowing artifice to subvert itself, its boundaries (edges) are redrawn and the internal space of the labyrinth becomes, like Icarus’s downward laden gaze, coextensive with the landscape beyond and the space of presentation takes over the city. Icarus flies from the labyrinth; no longer spellbound by its opaque walls, he moves through the air about him with a freedom unknown to Daedalus. Trapped within his present moment, Icarus soars higher and higher feeling the wind, the sun, and the dwindling water vapor; still unaware of limits, despite the warning from Daedalus, the heat of the sun only warms his skin and passes no thought of fear or pride through his mind. When his wings fall apart, Icarus plummets through the air, and as he falls, the wind rushes by his ears and he finds a silence that collapses the last remaining depth, separating him from reality. Icarus experiences a lucidity Daedalus can only dream of within his meridian flight; it is however, a lucidity that

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The Draftery

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Welcome Back to the Twentieth Century

DAN WOOD I like to think of the objects and prints in this series as relics or signposts of a bygone era. By extracting these images and memories from their original context onto a gallery wall or the pages of this book, they can serve as reminders of how we once felt and what we took—and still take—for granted. Perhaps this can shed new light onto how we perceive our current surroundings. My intent, as an artist, is based on the idea of forcing myself and the viewer to open our eyes and take in the meaning and beauty that is all around us. This may be manifested in what seem like mundane objects; it may be monumentally sad, or just plain silly, but it is all out there. Much of my work uses and presents seemingly plain subject matter as true emblems of our time, containing the meaning we may be looking for. I am particularly attracted to elements relating to printing: old newspaper clippings, misremembered headlines, and found copper letterpress plates are some among many. The 20th century letterpress printing processes I use for my work evolved from commercial printing as it has been practiced for the past 450 years. This medium enables the viewer to see the prints in a familiar, yet dated way. By embracing these older technologies, the subject and content of the prints are overlaid with the beauty of their processes.

17 to 27

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Excerpts from: As the Ground Covers the Horizon

ATHANASIOU GEOLAS Reading creates its own particular kind of space; and although it is predominantly mental, the physical space it takes up should not be ignored. The weight and thickness of books and drawings is no less present than the worlds that they evoke in us. Often, reading one book leads us back to the bookshelf again and again to find references in their original sources. Each book might even have its own mental space grafted into the margins of pages from multiple readers. It is appropriate then that this series of spaces is represented out of context; that the original essay is segmented and cut off from the rest of the project which had been built up around it. Originally, these written spaces were developed along with drafted drawings, a play, and a design for a building. Together, they were an attempt to open up a collective and active space of interaction under the definition of representation characterized between Icarus and Daedalus. Now, these representations are a series of extended quotes in a new context awaiting further interaction. Splayed out flat on the table as if on a dissection slab, these excerpts are analyzed and taken apart slowly, each page is cross-referenced and new content is inscribed. Certain words, phrases, or significant concepts are drawn out and tied together in order to produce a hovering mass above the page. These extended quotes do not present an argument窶馬either they nor the original essay are complete: this is a space in which to consider what is at stake in the faculty of representation.

29 to 39

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GravityONE: A Choreography for Militarized Airspace

OLIVIU LUGOJAN-GHENCIU As the medium of architectural representation is morphing, a wide array of techniques with which to represent the architecture of tomorrow has become available: poetry, code, film, animatronics, games, and web-based platforms are some among many. In this post-digital era, I am no longer lured to solely employ digital tools. As such, I allow myself to derive processes and ideas from different artistic branches; the human imagination renders representations more powerfully than microprocessors. I use digital tools—because they offer the ease of executing complex additive processes—with analog processes in order to suggest rather than define. I curate rather than code, represent the invisible with simulations rather than diagrams. More importantly, I use whatever is at hand: pixels, buttons, the forest, wires, plug-ins, physics engines, the rain, a screwdriver, my camper van‌ In today's representation of architectural spaces, the novelist replaces the draftsman. It is important, therefore, to use the tools of our generation and the power of our imagination to dream about space, rather than follow the tradition of drawing mere plans and sections.

41 to 51

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Between Correctness & Authenticity

LUKE PEARSON My work considers the relationship between the actual substrate of a drawing and how the multifarious lives and notorieties of buildings can define the attitude one takes towards their depictions. Informed by Hugh Ferriss’ distinction between correctness and authenticity in architectural delineation, my research is directed by thinking through drawing, where investigations into these spatial milieux result in work infused with repeated motifs, references and visual structures. A conversational relationship between the sketch and finished design is developed through smaller drawings that flesh out a conceptual framework for the production of larger works. The sketchbook becomes a space for prototyping ideas. Material choices are implicit in this process: the sketchbook becomes a palimpsest where marker ink bleeds through page-to-page, instigating new investigations that are tethered to these traces. Whether using markers on intentionally thin paper or building up fluid space through chisel tip markers and colouring pencils on film, I create tonal spaces that provide an ersatz navigational tool for larger scale drawings, where greater levels of resolution allow new architectural spaces to emerge. The relationship between the drawing material and the substrate implies curious material interactions, spatial qualities divergent from the norm, and exhibits different gestural approaches by the draughtsman. I seek to compare the decisions I take when producing drawings to an act of design through making. Through investigating the potentials of line and tone within the substrate space, I begin to define new additions to the lexicon of the architectural drawing.

53 to 63

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The Emperor's Castle

THOMAS HILLIER Architecture is and has always been the invention, representation, and manifestation of our dreams and desires. As the distance between architectural representation and the built environment closes, more and more fantastical ideas are becoming a reality. This notion has continued to open new territories in depiction and expression, delineating the porosity between fact and fiction. I am a spatial storyteller who attempts to look at architecture from a different perspective, using unorthodox narratives and programmes to initiate original and surreal observations with a particular interest in how literature can be directly translated into urban and architectural space. These observations use innovative and poetic materials coupled with a technological and environmental understanding to enhance and blur the thresholds of spatial design. A precise and meticulous craft drives the drawings, assemblages, and models. These assemblages start in blank sketchbooks that are then cut, folded, drawn, sewn, glued, collaged together, and fused with a narrative to create and occupy a world that is both real and surreal. These constructed dialogues between method and fantasy allow me to represent my ideas both physically and metaphorically, defying logical reason in unpredictable ways, providing an escape from the prosaic. And in this world of prosaic cityscapes, The Emperor’s Castle is something entirely different, an immersive narrative world that can evolve as myths evolve through time.

65 to 75

July 2012

Published by BOOKLET

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