Abducted Ground: The Ineffaceable Beaduric’s Island

  • Shaun Murray The Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL
Keywords: Occupying Drawing, Dialogue, Inhabitable Mandala, Ineffaceable Illumination, Abduction, Editor, Architecture


First of all, I will illustrate in this article that some typical occupational modalities of drawing by abductive processes involving the design of ecologies through chance and discovery (for example through radical innovations) in architecture. Abductive processes, formulated from the American philosopher Charles Sanders Peirce, start with an observation or set of observations and then seeks to find the simplest and the most likely conclusion from the observations. To design an ecology is to design a system of parts from things in a new kind of contextualism, like a tree, and to design a symbiotic relational object, like a light reflector, to reflect the light to focus on the growth of the tree. This may not seem radical nor innovative but the principle of symbiotically designing an ecology for a range of scaled interventions overtime on the same context does start to get interesting. From drawing and sketching what you can see in the actual context for a design proposal, to then redrawing and compose the observational drawing in a studio, to the time taken to experience and reflect on the spaces drawn towards making physical objects from the forms resonating as the drawing develops, there are many modalities to occupy a drawing as architecture. These modalities could be viewed as a form of ‘possible worlds’ (Murray, 2019) anticipations, a way of getting chances to shape the drawing world and act in it. It could be of help to prefigure risks, possibilities and effects of the architect as the editor of situations in the architectural drawing, and to promote or prevent broad rules of translation. Creating ethics means creating the world and act in it, in different (real or abstract) situations and problems. In this way events and situations can be reinvented either as an opportunity or a risk for new directions. The second part of the article describes some of the ‘twenty-six rules for translation’ through the drawing related to the design of ecologies through chance and discovery.

Author Biography

Shaun Murray, The Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL

Senior Teaching Fellow, The Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL

Senior Lecturer, University of Greenwich

Principal of ENIAtype