Critical Drawing: Sam Jacob

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Offering a cross-section of contemporary architectural drawing, this series invites a range of practitioners to reflect on the role of drawing in their practice and in architecture today. Join Sam Jacob, principal of Sam Jacob Studio and founding director of FAT, for our fourth talk on 6 February 2019.

Sam Jacob is principal of Sam Jacob Studio for architecture and design. His work spans scales and disciplines ranging from master planning and urban design through architecture, design and art projects. The studio is currently working on projects that include a masterplan for 250 homes, the reinvention of 1980’s business park, a mixed use development in London's Shoreditch and a public art commission for Milton Keynes. Previously, Sam was a founding director of FAT Architecture. He is also contributing editor for Icon magazine and columnist for both Art Review and Dezeen. Jacob is Professor of Architecture at the University of Illinois at Chicago, visiting Professor at Yale School of Architecture and Director of Night School at the Architectural Association.

About the series

Drawing is what distinguishes architecture from simple building – situating a design within the shared culture of ideas on which architecture rests. Sitting down with pen and paper has always been central to an architect’s daily routine, at least, that is, until the advent of ubiquitous CAD and 3D-modelling.

Today, drawing is undergoing a rebirth, as a new generation architects seize the opportunities afforded by drawing’s liberation from its practical responsibilities, and transform it into a vital site of critical practice. For other architects, drawing has remained core to their practice, side-stepping the digital/analogue dichotomy.

If drawing once allowed architects to visualise possible futures, might its rebirth point a way towards recapturing architecture’s optimism and agency?

Doors open at 18:45. We are in a Grade I listed, 19th-century building, so access isn't straightforward. If you require step-free access or extra assistance, please contact us in advance of your booking on or 020 7405 2107.​

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