Tag: public space

Drawing Sacred Forests and Courtyards in South Benin

Drawing Sacred Forests and Courtyards in South Benin

By Quentin Nicolaï

The following conversation between the editors of Accattone and Quentin Nicolaï was first published in Accattone 6 (2019). It documents research carried out by Nicolaï in Abomey, Benin, between January 2014 and June 2018. Drawing Matter would like to thank the author and the magazine’s editors for allowing us reproduce the… Read More

Aldo Rossi: Divination of a Drawing

Aldo Rossi: Divination of a Drawing

By Chloe Spiby Loh

‘With the instinct of a water-diviner, he begins to search, and that which is inside… begins to simmer to the surface.’ – Giorgio De Chirico This is a short meditation on an enigmatic drawing by Aldo Rossi. The drawing is framed as a stacked layering of three architectural elements whose… Read More

William Heath Robinson ‘Tightening the Green Belt’

William Heath Robinson ‘Tightening the Green Belt’

By Laura Freeman

On 22 March 1921, The Times reported on ‘the urgent need of a green belt being preserved round London.’ It was the first recorded use of the phrase. By the time William Heath Robinson came to makes sketches for ‘Tightening the Green Belt’ (c.1935–47), the urban ring o’ roses was familiar enough… Read More

Dating Siza: The Malagueira ‘Cupula’

Dating Siza: The Malagueira ‘Cupula’

By Manuel Montenegro

The unbuilt half-dome (referred to by the architect as the ‘cupula’) at the Quinta da Malagueira is the subject of a protracted design process that has lasted for over four decades. At the start of 2020, Álvaro Siza sent a drawing of the half-dome to Drawing Matter accompanied by letter… Read More

Venice Biennale (1985)

Venice Biennale (1985)

By Dario Passi

The third edition of the Venice Biennale in 1985, ‘Progetto Venezia’, directed by Aldo Rossi, had two major themes: the priority given to the moment of planning and the comparison with the Venetian landscape. For the 1985 exhibition, architects were invited to display their designs for the ‘requalification or the… Read More

Drawing on the Nolli Plan

Drawing on the Nolli Plan

By Sheila O'Donnell

Every January, when John and I visit Rome, I bring a set of A3 photocopies of the Nolli plan (Giambattista Nolli’s Nuova Topografia di Roma, 1748). I don’t bring the whole map – it stretches to twelve sheets, each about A2 in size – so before arriving I am already editing… Read More

Allies & Morrison: The Art of Architecture

Allies & Morrison: The Art of Architecture

By Gabor Gallov

Allies and Morrison is an office that has held onto its identity throughout its growth. When I entered the firm, the culture of the office was steeped in a careful, polite and thoughtful style of drawings. The muted drawing style could be observed in the early sketches of the partners… Read More

Colin Rowe: Piazza Augusto Imperatore (1995)

Colin Rowe: Piazza Augusto Imperatore (1995)

By Colin Rowe

– Colin Rowe, 1995. Excerpted from Colin Rowe, As I Was Saying: Recollections and Miscellaneous Essays, ed. Alexander Caragonne (London: MIT Press, 1996).

Leto Litho Leningrad

Leto Litho Leningrad

By William Firebrace

Joseph Brodsky, in his short essay ‘A Guide to a Renamed City’ (1979), wrote: The characteristic features of Leningraders are: bad teeth (because of lack of vitamins during the siege), clarity in pronunciation of sibilants, self-mockery, and a degree of haughtiness towards the rest of the country. Mentally this city… Read More

Behind the Lines 14

Behind the Lines 14

By Philippa Lewis

These are just insignificant sketches, but they remind me of the Exposition Internationale des Arts et Techniques in 1937; by night it was a unique experience – mémorable. You see, one theme of the exposition was light and water: an expression of what could be achieved with the power of modern electricity,… Read More

Basil Spence: Houses of Parliament

Basil Spence: Houses of Parliament

Sketch made by Sir Basil Spence at a meeting of the Royal Fine Art Commission in January 1969 to illustrate a scheme for enlarging the accommodation of MPs in the Houses of Parliament made by his assistant Christopher Libby.

Tales from the crypt

Tales from the crypt

By Stephen Bayley

The great mysteries are not the invisible things, but the visible ones. And to me, it is a great and fascinating mystery that the same architect, Giles Gilbert Scott, designed one of the world’s most awe-inspiring large buildings and one of its most exquisite small ones: Liverpool’s Anglican Cathedral and… Read More