The Projective Drawing

 John Hill
16. February 2018
Lionel Favre, "I'M-MIGRA-GINATION," 2018 (All photographs by John Hill/World-Architects)
A new exhibition at the Austrian Cultural Forum New York (ACFNY) finds ten artists addressing Robin Evans's classic 1995 work of architectural theory, The Projective Cast: Architecture and Its Three Geometries.
As described by the publisher, in The Projective Cast "Evans recasts the idea of the relationship between geometry and architecture ... [and] shows that geometry does not always play a stolid and dormant role but, in fact, may be an active agent in the links between thinking and imagination, imagination and drawing, drawing and building." In turn, Evans "urges resistance to the idea that pictures provide all that architects need, suggesting that there is much more within the scope of the architect's vision of a project than what can be drawn."

The Projective Drawing
"applies Evans’s theory, which is skeptical of drawing at its core, to challenge our understanding of how the medium of drawing operates in contemporary culture by highlighting both Austrian and international artists whose drawings require viewers to activate a matrix of complex and nontraditional ideas in order to interpret the works on view," per the exhibition text.

The Projective Drawing is curated by Brett Littman, the executive director of The Drawing Center. Although he has staged shows on architecture at the SoHo-based institution, such as Lebbeus Woods, Architect in 2014, The Projective Drawing enables Littman to engage directly with a significant piece of architecture that is itself "projective": Raimund Abraham's ACFNY. Fittingly, half of the ten artists he selected for the exhibition are from Austria. Highlighted below are contributions by Austrian artists Lionel Favre and Judith Saupper, two standouts from an impressive exhibition.
Lionel Favre, "I'M-MIGRA-GINATION," 2018. Favre engages even the most mundane aspects of Abraham's building, such as the fire alarm system's emergency light.
Lionel Favre, "I'M-MIGRA-GINATION," 2018. The artist also draws attention to the such details as this light cove retrofitted with a shelf for electronic equipment.
Lionel Favre, "I'M-MIGRA-GINATION," 2018. Favre's installation spans two floors, this one featuring a skyline of stacked blocks.
Lionel Favre, "I'M-MIGRA-GINATION," 2018. The two floors are connected by a hoist that drops down a small opening at the back of the gallery.
Judith Saupper, "The Great Noise [Das Grosse Rauschen]," 2014. Saupper's large site-specific collage of drawings occupies the gallery on the lowest level of ACFNY.
Judith Saupper, "The Great Noise [Das Grosse Rauschen]," 2014. Saupper takes the two-dimensional surface of paper and warps it into three dimensions to shape space.
Judith Saupper, "The Great Noise [Das Grosse Rauschen]," 2014. Her drawings depict a fictional place that appears to be loosely based on where she lives in Lower Austria.

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