“Mark Smout and Laura Allen are Senior Lecturers at the Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL. Our work takes two routes, architectural competitions, where the particular rigour of the competition brief, site and program provide the basis for new investigations and, conceptual design projects which test out the agenda and methodology of the design research practice. We focus on the dynamic relationship between the natural and the man made and how this can be revealed to enhance the experience of the architectural landscape”
This series contains abstracted planimetric drawings and eerily-serene cityscapes that suggest the changing contours of urban settlements. They represent an idea of a degenerate futurism, yet one might find similar typologies and scenes in places such as the favelas of Brazil and North Africa, and in overpopulated cities such as Lagos, Mexico City, and Mumbai. Though outputted digitally, the drawings possess a textured and painterly quality as a result of combining hand-drawn sketches, industrial textures, surfaces of deteriorated paper, and digital architectural models. A constant interplay between digital and analog processes is important in my work, resulting in a highly layered set of documents. The drawings presented here started out as digital images that were outputted, sketched and drawn over, and scanned back into the computer in order to be retraced, textured, and layered
“Architecture is a history of borders. It materializes existing power relations through a clear delimitation of space. The surrounding structures impose onto us in an intrusive way in order to reassure, control, contain, seduce.
They reflect our lifestyle, conditioning it directly.
The city is both territory and population, physical environment and gravity of social relations. It is the interaction between the delimiting built environment and the conditioned social flow that should be studied to approach its reality. Open the envelope to look inside.”