V&A and RIBA team up for Architects and Artists show

The V&A has teamed up with the RIBA to put on a new show celebrating the drawings of architects, whether this be plans for projects, drawings made while travelling or art made to supplement their income.

Night section, A House for Essex. Artist: FAT Architecture and Grayson Perry

Source: Ordinary Architeture

Night section, A House for Essex. Artist: FAT Architecture and Grayson Perry

Around 50 works will be presented, examining the relationship between architecture and art – particularly the ability to represent a building in two dimensions and communicate space, a practice seen as fundamental since the Renaissance period.

It will show how architects experience historic architecture and express it through drawings of buildings and landscapes, and therefore improve their understanding of architecture and their own craft. 

Egyptian temple Antony in Egypt, 1928. William Walcot

Source: RIBA Library Drawings and Archives Collection.

Egyptian temple Antony in Egypt, 1928. William Walcot

Meanwhile there is a message of communicating with different audiences through drawing – particularly clients and the media.

The exhibition sets out to be broad in its enquiry, taking in work from the likes of Raphael, (who was also an architect), and contemporary Brazilian architect Isay Weinfeld.

Design for an artists house and studio,Tite Street, Chelsea, 1878. Edward William Godwin

Source: Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Design for an artists house and studio,Tite Street, Chelsea, 1878. Edward William Godwin

Drawings include one by Raphael of the Pantheon in Rome, a design for an artist’s house by E.W. Godwin, a lithograph by Cyril Power for the staircase of Russell Square Tube station, a watercolour sketch by Hugh Casson, a drawing by Italian Futurist Virgilio Marchi and a volume of architecture fantasies by the Russian architect Iakov Chernikhov.

There is also a chance to see House for Essex, a collaboration between FAT Architecture and artist Grayson Perry – or rather the digital renderings which were created for it.

Architectural concept showing a log harvest in 2041,from the series Re-Forestation of the Thames Estuary, 2010. Tom Noonan

Source: Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Architectural concept showing a log harvest in 2041,from the series Re-Forestation of the Thames Estuary, 2010. Tom Noonan.

Other works include Tom Noonan’s depiction of the re-forestation of the Thames Estuary and drawings by William Burges, Augustus Pugin, Alfred Waterhouse and William Walcot.

Architects as Artists marks a 10-year collaboration between V&A and RIBA, a partnership which has seen them look at subjects including Maggie’s Cancer Care centres designed by some of the world’s most well-known architects, the Le Corbusier design for an Olympic stadium in Baghdad that never was, and the influence of European architecture in Britain during the Baroque period.

Designs for Truro Cathedral, 1878. William Burges

Source: Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Designs for Truro Cathedral, 1878. William Burges

Architects and Artists is free and runs from 15 November – 15 March at the V&A, Cromwell Road, London, SW7 2RL.

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