Period: c19th

Architectural models and the oriental ideal of the Alhambra

Architectural models and the oriental ideal of the Alhambra

Asun González Pérez

The Alhambra architectural models reflect the circumstances in which they were created, during the last years of the Romantic movement, when artists and patrons were fascinated by the diffuse idea of the ‘Orient’, somewhat embodied by the Alhambra. This part-myth, part-real palace was the ultimate destination for Romantic travellers and… Read More

Design Drawings Damage Atlas (2023)

Design Drawings Damage Atlas (2023)

Neil Bingham

Snap, crackle, pop. Oh, that horrible sound of unravelling a roll of architectural drawings on old dried-up tracing paper from the nineteenth century. Slowly unfurling the brown brittle sheet, it cracks and shatters, little bits drop off in flakes, littering the table and floor like confetti. The experience feels like… Read More

Return to the Archive

Return to the Archive

Hans-Dieter Nägelke

In the mellow warmth of September 2023, I, in my capacity as the Director of the Museum of Architecture at the Technical University Berlin, found myself in the unpretentious village of Mikoszewo, Poland. There, where the Vistula River gracefully concludes its journey into the arms of the sea, I stood,… Read More

Glarner Wirtschaftsarchiv

Glarner Wirtschaftsarchiv

Helen Thomas

Through an unprepossessing door tucked into the corner of two buildings located at the edge of a precinct both rural and industrial is the entrance to the kind of magic world that archives often hide. Founded 20 years ago by Dr. Sybill Kindlimann of the influential local family, Blumer, the… Read More

Schmitz and Drévet: The Egyptian Pavilions at the 1867 ‘Exposition Universelle’

Schmitz and Drévet: The Egyptian Pavilions at the 1867 ‘Exposition Universelle’

Anja Segmüller

The 1867 Paris Exposition Universelle was one of the most frivolous and lavish events in late-19th-century European history. Erected along the Champs-de-Mars, it encompassed a huge, covered arena surrounded by dozens of pavilions and gardens.[1] It was conceived by Napoleon III to showcase of industrial and technological progress, to promote… Read More

Baron Ferdinand de Rothschild at Waddesdon

Baron Ferdinand de Rothschild at Waddesdon

Baron Ferdinand de Rothschild

The following extract, a personal account by Baron Ferdinand de Rothschild, describes the imaginary and real processes of constructing and maintaining a country home, from the ground up, in late-19th-century England. Written for the Red Book in 1897, a family album of sorts, it is one of the key sources… Read More

The ‘indispensable ingredients of sublimity’: Smirke and Papworth’s Designs for the Wellington Testimonial

The ‘indispensable ingredients of sublimity’: Smirke and Papworth’s Designs for the Wellington Testimonial

Colum O'Riordan

In 2001, the Irish Architectural Archive (IAA) acquired at auction an item described in the catalogue as ‘Architectural Drawing, possibly by Robert Smirke, of Wellington Monument, Phoenix Park’. The unsigned, undated drawing is a perspective view of an obelisk, the base of which is a four-faced distyle Doric temple. This… Read More

The Manufacture of architecture: Joseph Paxton and the development of the Great Stove

The Manufacture of architecture: Joseph Paxton and the development of the Great Stove

Hugh Strange

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. Joseph… Read More

DMJ — Of Lines Terrestrial and Occult: Friedrich Gilly, Alberto Sartoris, Adolphe Appia, and the Matter of Perspective

DMJ — Of Lines Terrestrial and Occult: Friedrich Gilly, Alberto Sartoris, Adolphe Appia, and the Matter of Perspective

Ross Anderson

This essay discusses three enigmatic one-point perspective drawings. The first was made by the precocious Prussian architect and teacher Friedrich Gilly, the second by Alberto Sartoris as a young student of architecture in Geneva, and the third by the relatively unknown modern Swiss scenographer Adolphe Appia. These drawings have been… 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

Designs on Democracy (2022) – Review

Designs on Democracy (2022) – Review

Ellis Woodman

‘This is not a book in which material has been selected on the basis of taste; quite the contrary. These are not buildings or personalities with which it has been easy to empathise, and I hope that this book is not read as a defence or an apology.’  With these words the… Read More

Diplomatics and Instrumentality of the Drawing / William Butterfield

Diplomatics and Instrumentality of the Drawing / William Butterfield

Nicholas Olsberg

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. In… Read More