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The Colin Rowe Lecture on Architecture and Photography
​Images: ©Philipp Schaerer (left); RIBA Collections (right)
Talks and lectures

The Colin Rowe Lecture on Architecture and Photography

Discussion on the role of the image in architecture.

In an informal setting and in dialogue with experienced and imaginative guests, The Colin Rowe Lectures aim to discuss the role of the image in architecture, particularly the crucial role of architectural photography. Following the success of Richard Pare’s inaugural lecture in November 2016, the panel has selected from the ‘emerging scholars / practitioners’ entries two apparently diverging proposals, both focusing on the role played by people - or their absence - in architectural imagery. In their joint paper two scholars, Angelo Maggi (Venice) and Davide Deriu (London) will talk about the critical role played by people in images - workers, passers-by and staged characters - whilst the photographer and architect Philipp Schaerer (Zurich) will reflect on the way in which technology allows us to supersede reality - what do we perceive when looking at images that do not represent anything ‘real’? Whatever the image is representing, it works in the space of our imagination and that is the territory which the lecture aims to explore.

The lecture will consist of the two presentations followed by a round table with the conveners, a Q&A session with the public and finally the opportunity to continue the conversation informally with a glass of wine. The aim is to generate a lively debate on the current ‘state of the art’ of the architectural image. The lectures are considered as an open forum of discussion for architects, photographers, students and the simply curious. All are welcome.

Davide Deriu is a Reader in Architecture at the University of Westminster. He has done extensive research into representations of the built environment, published in books and journals. He also co-edited various works, including Emerging Landscapes (Ashgate, 2014), and is a founding editor of the journal Architectural Histories. Currently, he leads the interdisciplinary project ‘Vertigo in the City’ at Westminster, and is a Mellon Researcher on the ‘Architecture and/for Photography’ programme run by the CCA, where he previously curated the exhibition ‘Modernism in Miniature’.

Angelo Maggi is Associate Professor of History of Architectural Photography at Università Iuav di Venezia. He has taught in Italy and abroad and his recent work has revolved around the study of architectural photography and the analysis of representation as a tool of historical investigation. His books include Giorgio Casali Photographer / Domus 1951-1983: Architecture, Design and Art in Italy (2013), Photo Graphic Pedia (2014) and Re-visioning Venice 1893-2013 Ongania/Romagnosi (2014). Maggi has widely written books for Alinari.

Philipp Schaerer (Zurich, 1972), visual artist and architect, works at the intersection of architecture, photography and graphic design. His work has been widely published and exhibited and represented in several collections – among others in the collection of the MoMA; the ZKM Center for Art and Media Technology and the Fotomuseum Winterthur. Philipp has been a lecturer at several universities and, from 2014, a visiting professor in the department of Architecture (Art et Architecture) at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne.

Forum convened by Marco Iuliano (University of Liverpool) and Valeria Carullo (RIBA)

The lectures are a collaboration between the Centre for Architecture and Visual Arts at the University of Liverpool and the Robert Elwall Photographs Collection at the RIBA.