Pac Studio 8 Marian Macken Drawing Room

Exhibition & Temporary Structures 2021 Credits
  • Creative Directors
    Aaron Paterson, Marian Macken, Sarosh Mulla
  • Contributors
    Brendan Donovan, Clovis McEvoy, Xiaoling Cheng, Fabio Morreale


Drawing Room was an exhibition held at CoCA Toi Moroki – Christchurch 28.11.20 — 20.02.21.
Architectural drawing is primarily seen as generating and documenting future buildings. These drawings picture miniature versions of as-yet-unbuilt spaces, simulations of rooms that will be inhabited in the future.

Drawing Room presents an alternative kind of architectural drawing. It explores architectural drawing in space, rather than of spaces, and drawings with different scales: both full scale and scaleless. In doing this, the site of architectural drawing shifts from the studio workplace to the gallery.

Drawing Room explores architecture as a consequence of its media in the post-digital realm. It suggests speculative drawing practices that sit beside architectural professional practice, yet feed into it, highlighting the rapidly changing way architects draw and visualise their designs. Here, bodies and drawings intersect.

Drawing Room is comprised of three parts, each exploring experimental mediums of drawing and suggests speculative drawing practices that sit beside professional practice.

1. Drawing Machine – Kinetic Sculpture

An aluminium frame makes its way across the floor passing through beams of light. Shadows appear and change. These shadows are designed, not accidental. A full-scale drawing with light comes and goes. Just as this apparatus produces shadows, it also generates sound. The mechanics of movement are recorded and replayed, reinforcing the cyclic experience of light in the space and establishing another rhythm over the movement of the frame.

At 12m long 3.2m high, the rotating aluminium arm fills the gallery. Casting shadows on the walls was an intriguing way to fill the gallery's volume and allow visitors to imagine inhabiting a drawing of shadows. The kinetic sculpture is comprised of a bead-blasted aluminium frame, rubber tyres, electric motor and gearbox; on a 2.5-minute rotation cycle. A parametric soundtrack continually changes with the motion of the Machine.

Music and sound design: Fabio Morreale

2. Edge of Shadow - Virtual reality artwork

The virtual reality environment begins in the gallery space then becomes an abstracted fiction in time with the drawing machine's cycle. The artwork uses the geometry of CoCA gallery to propose a new shadow-filled alternative. The projected shadows are materialised, casting their own shadows. These shadows need planes and surfaces to fall on: a new peripheral edge catches them. A new drawing is created, generated from the physical context of the gallery, but expanded beyond these bounds.
Music and sound design: Clovis McEvoy
Research assistant: Xiaoling Cheng

3. Penumbral – Movie 4 minutes

The architects collaborated with a filmmaker to create a short sci-fi film set within a previous installation. Set in a gallery space with a large stainless-steel convex mirror (a Claude glass) inside a 3.6 metre cubed skeletal aluminium frame. Simulated shadows of the installation are projected onto the gallery walls and across the frame. The short film begins with the exhibition of the work in a gallery. It then departs, into a speculative realm – both temporal and spatial.
Writer & Director: Brendan Donovan. Starring Katie Elliot.