Some roles of drawing
Tuesday 19 February 2019, 6pm

Fretton: Lisson Sketchbook 90-1-6

Tuesday 19 February 2019, 6pm
The Courtauld Institute of Art
Lecture Theatre 1
Vernon Square, Penton Rise, Kings Cross
London WC1X 9EW

Organised by Dr Robin Schuldenfrei with Matthew Page and the Courtauld Architecture Society, as part of the Courtauld's Modernities: Architecture, Design, Theory seminar series


Some Roles of Drawing is an evening dedicated to architectural drawing, invoking Tony Fretton's sketchbooks for the Lisson Gallery (1984–91) as a beginning point of enquiry. With guest speakers Tony Fretton, Dr Olivia Horsfall Turner, Senior Curator of Designs, V&A and Niall Hobhouse, it will explore some of the many and shifting roles played by architectural drawings, within and beyond practice..

Through three interconnected parts, Some Roles of Drawing begins with the physical object of the Lisson Gallery sketchbooks before moving to a discussion on how drawing fits into an architect’s process and the life (or lives) of drawing afterwards. Through this structure, the evening also aims to examine how drawings are studied and the importance afforded to them within architectural history.

5.00 pm: Viewing of the Lisson Gallery sketchbooks with Tony Fretton (for Courtauld students only)

6.00 pm: Presentation by Tony Fretton on his use of drawing

6.45 pm: Conversation between Niall Hobhouse, Tony Fretton and Dr Olivia Horsfall Turner, Senior Curator of Designs, V&A, on the afterlives of architectural drawings 

Presentations from 6 pm are held in the Courtauld's Lecture Theatre 1.


On a compilation from Fretton's Lisson Gallery sketchbooks, a downloadable iBook; to purchase the publication for Lisson Gallery 1, when Fretton was sitting again in front of seven of his early sketchbooks, talking through the pages; and for an excerpt from this interview.