Drawing for the Design Imaginary

“Not-So-Still-Life” 1 of 3 original representations digitally pushing beyond the conventions of one point linear perspective from Architectural Artfiacts, selected by competition for inclusion in exhibition at the Carnegie Museum in Pittsburgh, PA, spring 2019

Drawing for the Design Imaginary occurred in conjunction with the 107th Annual ACSA Conference – Black Box:  Articulating Architecture’s Core in the Post-digital Era in Pittsburgh, PA, March 2019.

Curated by:  Jeremy Ficca, Associate Professor + Director of DFAB, Carnegie Mellon University

This “thick-drawing” is a meta-representation – it makes a critique of the conventional methods by which things are represented into the presentation of a new thing.

Images are constructs that filter how and what is seen.  This filter appears when representations, select information assembled and viewed in a particular way, are rehearsed enough to become a convention and affect vision, generally.  Modes of imaging can become so familiar that we no longer see them as a construct or know how they limit vision.  If new architectural production is to remain critically conveyed through representation, an examination of the methods by which we image is an imperative.  A zoomed-in look at one filter enforced by linear perspective, our oldest most familiar representational convention, reveals a contemporary alternative.

This speculative representation questions the necessity of both a single view point and the detachment of the space of visual representation from the space of the viewer through a critique of the conventional picture plane.  Without a single station point and a flat plane of projection, two things essential to linear perspective, the self-consciousness of viewing a representation of a thing is abandoned.  The presentation of ‘thingness’ itself is made possible and conventional codes of spectatorship and engagement no longer apply.

Here, a range of viewpoints of a single space are registered simultaneously in the line work of a still life – a linear perspective representation of objects displayed within a room.  Each object in this “thick-drawing” orients itself to a different viewpoint of the space, pulling the architectural planes that suspend objects with them.  A new system of negotiated rotation is overlaid as planes are fractured and displaced as they jostle for territory within the original space.  The perspective pleats with new seams and folds appearing as the range of viewing angles pull planes of the room represented into the room of the viewing audience.  As this drawing is viewed by an audience on-the-move, the axial orientation of the space represented moves with the viewer – producing real-time effects of changing perception of space in a new and not-so-still life.

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