The Architectural Drawings Symposium involved a partnership between Drawing Matter Trust and University of Technology Sydney and focused on the collections of original architectural drawings held by the RIBA at the Victoria and Albert Museum, The Courtauld Institute of Art, and the private collections of Niall Hobhouse of the Drawing Matter Trust at Shatwell Studios, Somerset.
The symposium developed from two interests. The first emerges from the material effects of original architectural drawings and how these have been used to understand specific architectural speculations. Drawings are often very difficult to comprehend through published reproductions. They are of specific size, scale, detail and materiality that demand close archival attention. The symposium offered this context. The second interest emerges from the way in which architectural drawings are interpreted in the contemporary context, that is, in the wake of the focus on digital image production. Returning to questions of technique visible in archival works critically engages this recent shift.
The aim of the symposium was to encourage and support research and publications focusing on the subject of architectural drawing as articulated within the project outlined above. Each of the participants is actively engaged in writing on or experimenting with the effect of architectural drawing and its image. The symposium was organised around selected drawings in situ in order to focus on their material fabric as well as imagery.