Special Subject: Architecture Design — Drawing Architecture: Theory, Concept, Practice

Permission of instructor

Few practicing architects in the modern era have built what they designed. Architects contrast with many other professionals in that they do not labor directly over the objects of their thought. Historically, architectural intent has been required to pass through a medium of communication. In this course we will look critically at architectural drawings as a form of communication intrinsic to architectural discourse.

We will question the graphic and verbal vocabularies with which architectural drawings are produced and interpreted. We will address social and technical apparatuses motivating the production, reproduction and dissemination of drawings. We will debate the future role of orthographic drawing in architectural discourse. We will explore new mediums facilitating the communication of architectural intent.

We will also strive to contextualize drawings beyond registers of architectural form and content. Through readings, discussions, guest lectures and a (possible) series of visits to the MIT Museum, we will frame drawings as commodities, analytical tools and devices through which architects have written and recorded history.

During the first part of the semester, class time will be dedicated to discussions about creative and analytical material probing architectural drawings for their discursive content. The second part of the semester will center around the development of collective and/or individual projects, which may adopt a variety of forms.

This course is open to undergraduate and graduate students. Please note that it meets for two (2) hours per week and carries nine (9) units.


NOTE: I intend for this course to be a collaborative effort. Students are welcome to shape this class according to their own interests and concerns. After the first few meetings, we will collectively determine the course’s format and final deliverables.