Deadline – 16th April 2010.

Abstracts are invited on innovative approaches to critical and creative work about buildings and places, through text and or images. Both scholarly papers and new examples of critical and creative work are welcome.

The conference will be held at Brisbane’s Gallery of Modern Art, and the State Library of Queensland, on July 22 & 23 2010. Keynote speaker is Professor Katja Grillner, KTH Stockholm.

Within an expanding international discourse on writing and architecture, the conference invites a broad range of disciplinary approaches including perspectives from photography, literature, philosophy, anthropology, aesthetics, the fine arts, design, psychology, cultural studies, art history, creative writing, sociology, journalism, and others. Topics might include, but are not limited to:

WRITING AS AN ARCHITECTURAL PRACTICE: When and how is writing an architectural medium? What might an experimental writing in architecture and its criticism be? What is the potential for ficto-critical modes of writing in architecture? How is site-specificity significant in both architecture and writing? What parallels exist between style, form, structure, and ornament in both architecture and writing?

ARCHITECTURAL IMAGES AND TEXT: What are the genre conventions of architectural photography and how could they be challenged? What is the role of photography in architectural criticism, and how do images and text relate? Could there be a purely visual architectural critique, and what would be the value of this? Is drawing a kind of architectural writing? POPULAR ARCHITECTURE WRITING: Why is there so little writing about architecture in the popular media? And why does so little writing about architecture take a popular tone? What might a popular architectural criticism be? What might a participatory architectural criticism be? What are the potentials and limitations of architectural writing in the new media?

WRITING THE ARCHITECTURE OF QUEENSLAND: How has the architecture of Queensland been represented in writing? How have buildings figured within larger constructions of place, city, region, state, or nation? What do Queensland architects read? What are the clichés of ‘place’ in both architecture and writing in Queensland, and what attempts have been made to critique, subvert or expand them?

Abstract proposals of no more than 300 words, accompanied by a short biography, should be emailed as a Word document to by 16 April. Authors should specify which of the following types of contribution they wish to make:

1) a 1000 word original piece of critical / creative writing about a building or place, possibly accompanied by images, to be presented at the conference in a 15 minute session
2) a 3000 word scholarly paper to be presented in a 20 minute session followed by discussion

Abstracts will be peer-reviewed by members of the conference committee. Accepted abstracts will be notified by the end of April. A selection will be made from papers presented at the conference, for inclusion in an edited book to be published in 2011.

The conference is convened by Dr Naomi Stead of the ATCH (Architecture Theory Criticism History) Research Centre in the School of Architecture at The University of Queensland, and staged with financial assistance from the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland.

Dr Naomi Stead
Research Fellow, School of Architecture
The University of Queensland
St Lucia, Qld, 4072

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