session 1.1

introduction (class)

After introduction of the tutors and the assignment you will be required to visit your allocated site for the first time. Strategies for site analysis and investigation will be discussed in class. It is important that you realise that this is an assignment which asks you to investigate the qualities of a space/site through repeated habitation, observation, and mapping of your given space. It is not an assignment where research happens extensively on the internet or in the library.

This first week focusses on SPATIAL STRATEGIES of investigating a site. As such you will look at ways of documenting space, studying space, and understanding specific processes that are used to represent / draw space for art and design practises. This includes site analysis, research, and drawings of plans, sections, and elevations.

investigating the site (independent study)

Go to your site and sit.
Stay there.
Watch what goes on.
Using strategies discussed in class begin to research, document, and observe your site.
[this process will continue through the rest of assignment]
Measure the dimensions of your site (in preparation for drawing a plan/section/elevation). These will be useful in the next class when plans and sections are to be produced

Different sites will present different problems relating to this exercise. The interior of a car for example may be busy with forms and gadgets while a mid-tideline marking at Balaena Bay may be devoid of fixed form. Different strategies of drawing and measuring will have to be employed for each. Within the car, the student may wish to limit an investigation even further to describe, for example, the terrain of the dashboard. With the mid-tideline a student may work to find measurements by digging at a hole at low tide until water is reached, then draw this hole’s dimensions, also describing the sectioned sand with its composite shells, glass, seedpods, cigarette butts and whatever else might be discovered in the archaeological process. This may involve choosing one part, or a feature of the site, instead of the whole.

Session 1 class presentation – 131 pp session 1

Visit these websites for inspiration on how to approach your space:

Here is a PDF which demonstrates different drawing techniques that can be applied to your drawings.  The password to access this PDF is 197131.


How do you measure space? through conventional ‘standard’ means (ie metres, millimetres etc) or through more relative units (body lengths or the number of forward rolls you can do between here and there …)? What is the relationship of space to time?  How do you measure time – is it in breaths, or is it related to the tides, or is it based on the number of times you hear a car beeping…? What else do you notice about the space you move through and how can you record it (sound, light, movement, other people, buildings, environment, smell, texture…)? How does you presence change the space? What do you leave behind?

Simon Morris: Painting Projects 2000-2005