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Image, Text, Architecture
The research for Image, Text, Architecture was developed as a PhD (completed 2006, supervised by Prof Jane Rendell and Prof Iain Borden) and initially evolved from my experiences as an independent critic of architecture, writing for journals such as The Architects’ Journal, The Architectural Review and Blueprint. The research was published as the book, Image Text, Architecture: The Utopics of the Architectural Media (Routledge, 2015). It brings a radical and detailed analysis of the contemporary architectural media, addressing issues of architectural criticism, architectural photography and the role of journal editors. Applying a theoretical method of ‘utopic critique’ developed from the work of Louis Marin and Fredric Jameson, it covers examples as diverse as an article by British artist Paul Nash in The Architectural Review, 1940, a project by French architects Lacaton & Vassal published in the journal 2G, 2001, and the photography of Hisao Suzuki for the Spanish journal El Croquis. The purpose of this enquiry was to reveal the generic nature of architectural representation and the complicit structures that limit the critical role of architectural journalism within the profession. However, the study also seeks to reveal the potential complexity of the architectural journal page, as a contested site in architectural discourse, containing diverse and contradictory expression and desires across image and text and their interaction: a ‘utopics’ of journal discourse. The case studies highlight moments where a different type of critical voice emerges on the architectural journal page, indicating the possibility of a more progressive engagement with the media as a platform for critical thinking about architecture, and to rethink the journals’ role within architectural history.
1 Researchers
  • The Bartlett School of Architecture
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