Project 3: Location:Section


The third project is to make a beautiful, highly detailed and communicative measured section drawing, that embodies an Architectural idea, based on detailed observations and measurements of the site for the main High:Street project in Lisbon, Portugal. The drawing will cut through the site in section and plan to reveal the inter-connection between the people of Lisbon, their identity and activities; the historic and contemporary urban fabric; environmental conditions, geology, history, myth, legend, fragment and whole. The drawing will define your site, reading of the place, and be a critical point of departure for the High:Street project.


In Greek the word for ‘section’ derives from ‘Temenos’, which means ‘temple’ referring to ‘a sacred piece of land cut off from the rest’, and in a sense drawing a section is a sacred act: making an imagined cut through the space and matter we inhabit, occupy and experience, to unveil the unobtainable and hidden. A section cut perpendicular to the ground is organized by gravity revealing the connection to the Earth; a section parallel to the ground (a plan) reveals organization and distribution, and by making both “cuts”, one at a large scale and the other at a fine scale, you can explore and reveal the essence of this extraordinary place.



a. Accurately and beautifully draw by hand a (perpendicular) section through the site to reveal hidden spaces, activities, participants, exchanges, constructions, and explore the relationship between the sense of place and it’s fabric
b. Accurately and beautifully draw a (horizontal section) plan by hand of the site to relate large scale events, activities and organization to local responses and implications, while also defining the extent of the site and locate the (perpendicular) section
c. Compose the section and plan drawings within a single highly detailed hybrid Location:Section drawing to communicate your idea and reading of the place
d. Consider and analyze your chosen site by curating your survey data, photographs, sketches, samples, and research to support and inform the Location:Section drawing



  • Drawing on your Home:Comfort and Corner:Shop projects, consider which part of the Lisbon site is most interesting and relevant to your thinking
  • Choose a section cut-line and plan-level which most clearly reveal your reading of the place
  • Define the extent of the site, and make a highly detailed measured survey: dimensioned sketches, photos, rubbings, annotated maps, collected fragments…
  • Explore, research and document your reading(s) of the place, communities, cultures and origins
  • Observe and record the activity and occupation of the place, look in detail and at the wider connections to the urban, social and cultural fabric
  • Identify what you can measure and what is known, and speculate about the rest
  • Before drawing, make free-hand sketches for each element of the Location:Section drawing
  • Use the act of drawing as a tool to explore and interrogate the place, working it out as you work into the drawings
  • Expect to work-over and re-draw your drawings many times before they are complete
  • Use all the necessary signs, symbols and drawing conventions to clarify your drawings: north-point, scale-bar(s), annotation
  • Use whatever techniques and media best capture your ideas

2018-11-21 12.58.25


  • What makes the chosen “cuts” unique? what is revealed? what are the connections? what is the extent?
  • How do you distinguish between the material that is “cut” and surfaces revealed in elevation?
  • Inevitably your section will cut through materials offering differing resistance, density, temperature, age, material origin, chemical properties how can this be described?
  • How do you distinguish between known and unknown conditions? between fact, estimation and fiction?
  • How might the boundaries between public/private, salty/sweet, humid/dry…be communicated


Field Work: On the Field Trip 14th – 21st November

Cross-Crits:   yr2: Mon 10th Dec, wk12             yr3: Thur 13th Dec, wk12


Unit G_HfH_Project3_LocationSection