Period: c18th

DMJ – Canaletto’s Venetian Sketches and the Camera Obscura

DMJ – Canaletto’s Venetian Sketches and the Camera Obscura

Philip Steadman

Antonio Canaletto used a camera obscura to make careful sketches of the buildings of Venice. The Gallerie dell’ Accademia has a quaderno, a notebook containing 140 pages of these sketches, which provided the raw material for paintings made in the 1730s, as well as finished drawings that Canaletto offered for sale.… Read More

Repton does a Bernini – A crescent for The Ham

Repton does a Bernini – A crescent for The Ham

Timothy Mowl

Ever since 1743, when John Wood failed to get backers for his vast Royal Forum, the area to the south of South Parade has been treated like the campus of a nondescript university. The chequered gardens of Abbey Orchard have been supplanted by Manvers Street car park, while to the… Read More

François Cointeraux: the Architect of the ‘Agricultural Proletariat’

François Cointeraux: the Architect of the ‘Agricultural Proletariat’

Anja Segmüller

François Cointeraux was born in Lyon in 1740 and was introduced to agriculture and construction at an early age through his family’s business ventures. When his uncle designated him the ‘universal heir’ of his company, Cointeraux inherited several buildings in Lyon and around 24 houses in the area. His marriage… Read More

Jérôme-Charles Bellicard: Metamorphoses

Jérôme-Charles Bellicard: Metamorphoses

Janine Barrier

Jérôme-Charles Bellicard’s drawing, while illustrating one of the poems of Ovid’s Metamorphoses, reveals a true picture of the progress of architecture. The transformation of Philemon’s and Baucis’ humble cottage, as required by Jupiter, which unfurls before our very eyes, proclaims that in 1769, the metamorphosis of the primitive hut at… Read More

Grotto-Heavens: Rockeries, Dreamscapes and the Chinese Garden

Grotto-Heavens: Rockeries, Dreamscapes and the Chinese Garden

Ethan Loo

Stone, hard and unfeeling, appears in our contemporary lexicon as a metaphor for the lifeless and the immutable. Yet in the classical gardens and paintings of China, stones were objects of fascination for the élite literati for precisely the opposite reason: the cosmic forces of creation and dissolution they, and… Read More

DMJ – ‘All the varieties of Nature’s works under ground’: the Geological Imagination of Alexander Pope

DMJ – ‘All the varieties of Nature’s works under ground’: the Geological Imagination of Alexander Pope

Yue Zhuang

In 1739, the English poet Alexander Pope transformed his grotto – a subterranean passage that used to consist of a cryptoporticus with architectural orders – into ‘a mine’. Minerals were encrusted into the walls in a manner that imitated those found underground. Previous scholars have considered this to be a… Read More

Two Way Traffic: Japanese Woodblock Prints

Two Way Traffic: Japanese Woodblock Prints

Alex Faulkner

One of the great enigmas of ukiyo-e – Japanese woodblock prints of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries – is the anachronistic intrusion of Western drawing into an apparently closed world; that the sophisticated culture of Edo (now modern Tokyo) seemingly closed off its borders since the Middle Ages. The widespread… Read More

In the Archive: Petit, Lebas, Fontaine, Le Corbusier and Kolář

In the Archive: Petit, Lebas, Fontaine, Le Corbusier and Kolář

Raphael Haque

Click on drawings to move and enlarge. 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. In The Library at Night, Alberto Manguel likens a library to a human brain and… Read More

After the Revolution: Dugourc in Spain

After the Revolution: Dugourc in Spain

Iris Moon

After Jean Démosthène Dugourc’s forays into revolutionary paperwork, his return to silk and his migration to Spain to work for the Bourbons in 1800 places pressure on understanding his revolutionary activities, and whether he indeed had but briefly dabbled in the politics of the period before ultimately wishing, in his… Read More

Dugourc’s Playing Cards

Dugourc’s Playing Cards

Iris Moon

After the journée of 10 August, Jean Démosthène Dugourc sought to distance himself from Etienne Anisson-Dupéron. He turned his attention from wallpaper to playing cards, leasing a space with his Jacobin business partner Urbaine Jaume in the former warehouse of the Académie royale de musique, down the street from the… Read More

Alberto Pérez-Gómez: Architecture as Drawing

Alberto Pérez-Gómez: Architecture as Drawing

Mark Dorrian and Alberto Pérez-Gómez

Drawing Matter is delighted to present three texts by Alberto Pérez-Gómez on architecture and its representation, the first writings by him to be carried on the Drawing Matter website. The first, ‘Architecture as Drawing’, is an early essay that initially appeared in the Journal of Architectural Education in 1982, a… Read More

William Dickinson’s Pocketbook: Rethinking Drawing & practice in Early C18th England

William Dickinson’s Pocketbook: Rethinking Drawing & practice in Early C18th England

Elizabeth Deans

During the upheavals of the Civil War, Westminster Abbey had functioned as the church of the state for the Commonwealth. Upon the Restoration of Charles II, the Abbey resumed its historic role as the coronation church for English monarchs. [1] Parliament voted towards restoring the fabric, reinstituting its monarchical function… Read More