Architect’s communicate visually. This truism provides the backbone of architectural history and thought though immediately it offers the question of “...communicate what?” Clearly, on thing that we communicate through visual production is methodologies and construction; others might say that we produce visuals both in space and in drawing to convey ideas. These are both well founded and truisms that we cannot avoid, however this definition of the communicative as the reason for our insertion of things into the world avoids the another crucial reason architect’s put things into the world and begs the question of whether visual production of the architect can be anything other than pure art or pure visual communication.
"I would like to write a history of architecture where in it the drawing would be considered not so much a work of art or a truck for pushing ideas from place to place, but as the locale of subterfuges and evasions that one way or another get round the enormous weight of convention that has always been architecture’s greatest security and at the same time its greatest liability." ( Robin Evans Translations from Drawings to Buildings, 186)
Evans here is calling out the other reasnon that architect’s make things both built and in drawing which is for self-reflection and reaction. The process of making and visual production allows for the constant process of re-making and re-imagining. If we are to only rely on what is in our mind’s eye we would only need to plug our brain into a computer and we would be done with it. Rather the actual process of drawing, and modeling is that of a feed-back loop between our immediate apiori ideas and the the drafting table, where new ideas emerge.
It is this direct question that is at the center of our Visual Studies pursuit, how can the visual productions of an Architect not only be a piece of art or be a communicative device, but also an investigation or a tool used to fuel further thought. It is in this way that the architect, utilizes the diagram, the spatial construction; “The diagram is an approximate abstraction which begins from an unknown and moves to a final resolution.” In this seminar we learn not only to speak but how to learn from drawing.