The second issue of Architecture Image Studies focuses on a series of projects created, by an international group of architects and academics, as thought experiments and developed through the production of speculative architectural drawings and critical texts. Together they represent a provocative and polemical approach to contemporary architectural and spatial practice.

The central theme of ‘Narrative Architecture’ engages with possibilities of spatial representation in architecture through the themes of cognition, perception, experience, whilst employing wide-variety forms, media and techniques.

The contributors employ speculative narrative methods to create architectural projects and texts that combine 21st-century approaches to digital technology with analogue processes and methodologies to experiment with hybridised forms of representation creating new architectural typologies and expanding disciplinary territories.

Much of the work published here was initially exhibited in a series of exhibitions, most recently as part of the Shanghai Urban Space Art Season 2019 in the exhibition ‘Sensorium’. Through the production of these drawings and texts, the contributors seek to align themselves with a tradition of visionary narratives and use the multiple platforms of dissemination to communicate those ideas to a wider set of audiences beyond architectural academia.

At a time where the autonomy of architects is under threat from the pressures of commercialisation and commodification, it is our ambition to continue a debate about what makes architecture ‘architecture’ beyond the limits of the corporate world of architectural practice, focused around representations, where the ‘drawings’ are not generated for something else. They stand and exist in themselves as architecture.

Published: 2020-12-30