Category: commentaries, rants & reflections

Shatwell Farm: Cars

Shatwell Farm: Cars

Emily Priest

This text is the first in a series of studies of Shatwell Farm made by Emily Priest while staying on site in September last year. I first came to Shatwell Farm on a wintery November morning in 2022 to see the drawing archive with some friends. On arrival, Niall recommended… Read More

Connor Street: Made by Many Hands

Connor Street: Made by Many Hands

Kieran Hawkins

The following text is the fourth in a series by architect Kieran Hawkins, Director of Cairn, tracing the design and construction of an extension to a Victorian House in East London, recounting the everyday realities of the project and, in the green text, the broader environmental issues incumbent on architects to address. The texts have been developed… Read More

In the Archive: Alejandro Carrasco Hidalgo

In the Archive: Alejandro Carrasco Hidalgo

Alejandro Carrasco Hidalgo

In this series, Drawing Matter invites visitors to write about material in the archive or the libraries at Shatwell that they have viewed as part of their research. During the peaceful and beautiful train ride that goes from London Paddington to Castle Cary, I dedicated time to thinking about what… Read More

Trevor Dannatt: St Mary’s Grove — I’m going to get medieval on your ass!

Trevor Dannatt: St Mary’s Grove — I’m going to get medieval on your ass!

Adrian Dannatt

‘I’m going to get medieval on your ass!’ Any analogy between the hefty massing of the middle-ages and soi-disant Brutalism is here revived in the bold metal hinges of our garage door, worthy of some château fort. Likewise the solid lead parapet of the roof could well guard a fortress, if also reminiscent of the… Read More

Fragmentary Notes on Unclaiming the Life of a Drawing

Fragmentary Notes on Unclaiming the Life of a Drawing

Bahar Avanoğlu

The following notes reflect on a first year teaching studio led by Bahar Avanoğlu at Istanbul Bilgi University. The studio took Niall McLaughlin’s Alternative Histories model, an interpretation of a sketch by Basil Spence for extending the Houses of Parliament in London, as a starting point to continue a chain… Read More

Judit Reigl: Invisible Cities

Judit Reigl: Invisible Cities

Janos Gat

Judit Reigl was ninety-two years old in 2015 when she started Dance of Death, her transcendent series of small-scale vanitas drawings. Having reached a stage where she could barely see her own pencil marks, Reigl found skulls to be a ready subject. She said she had drawn many skulls in… Read More

Gathered Moments: Asplund’s Villa Snellman

Gathered Moments: Asplund’s Villa Snellman

Andrew Carr

Virginia Woolf’s use of short stories to form larger works, and her bracketing of inner discourse with physical objects and phenomena, suggest a similar episodic approach to architectural composition. Discrete moments are assembled to form a whole which is often held within an overarching temporal structure. This structure does not… Read More

Hans Hollein & Spiritual Expression in Architecture

Hans Hollein & Spiritual Expression in Architecture

Charles Howell

The defining characteristics of modern architecture took shape against a host of disorientating shifts in the 19th century. On the theoretical side, the instantiation and development of aesthetics as an autonomous realm strained a sacred harmony between beauty, truth, and goodness. On the practical side, technological, social, and cultural advancements… Read More

Work with your hands: AUB Summer School 2023

Work with your hands: AUB Summer School 2023

Timothy Christian Murphy

‘Work with your hands, so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders and so that you will not be dependent on anybody.’1 Thess. 4:11-12 All architecture begins with our hands. We make physical what we understand in order to communicate the invisible to the outside world. The translation… Read More

Architecture and Real Abstraction: Adler & Sullivan

Architecture and Real Abstraction: Adler & Sullivan

Francesco Marullo

This film is part of series of posts of selected papers from the study symposium at Shatwell Farm, hosted by Drawing Matter and convened by KU Leuven and TU Delft on 27 and 28 April 2023. More about the symposium, and other films and written papers, can be found here. The… Read More

Fraser Stables: Remembering Architecture 

Fraser Stables: Remembering Architecture 

Matt Page

Fraser Stables speaks quietly through his series Remembering Architecture. There is a staid documentarian quality to his photographs, but not that of architectural photography. When architectural details—the meeting of nature and architecture, light falling on surfaces—are made the focus, the images speak more to a sensitive process of recording moments; and in many… Read More

Alberto Ponis: Drawing Landscape

Alberto Ponis: Drawing Landscape

Team SHICHAI拾柴

This is film was made by team SHICHAI拾柴 for the exhibition ‘Drawing Landscape: Alberto Ponis,’ exhibited at Tongji University, Shanghai, 10 April—20 May 2023. It concludes a series of posts on Drawing Matter pairing team SHICHAI拾柴’s films with drawings from our collection; find these in the ‘related reading’ below.