BA ID Unit 1 and 2

History and Theory Lecture Notes

Memorials Video Notes: 13/11/19

Memorialising. Public Memorials by Grace Adam 

Memorial Definition: A statue or structure established to remind people of a person or event. 

  • A war memorial is a building, monument, statue or either edifice to celebrate a war or victory, or (predominating in modern times) to commemorate those who died or were injured in a war. 

Different kinds of memorials:

The Camp Barker Memorial:

  • Frames the site’s history as Camp Barker, a Civil War ‘contraband camp’, with three entry gateways to a school in Washington D.C. 
  • Union forces used the term contraband to describe formally enslaved people.
  • It forms part of daily life and daily ritual at the school. This memorial strives to promote an awareness and dialogue with the past, as part of the fabric of everyday life.
  • Charred wood is UV, weather, rot, fire and insect resistant. 

Image result for The Camp Barker Memorial

Britishi-Gharian architect David Adjaye created a concrete pavilion in Johannesburg:

  • A memorial to trumpeter and anti-apartheid campaigner Hugh Masekela. 
  • This simple pavilion is constructed from pre-cast concrete.
  • Five columns with different shaped profiles support a perforated roof, designed to mimic local flora.
  • It connects to, and reflects its physical environment.
  • “African monuments are a place of gathering and reflection, they help us edify the significance of our ancestors, our heritage and culture,” said Adjaye
  • “Monuments act as a reminder of our duty in the present to honour the past, they spur us to make a better future.” 

Image result for concrete pavilion in Johannesburg

The National Memorial for Peace and Justice:

  • MASS Design Group and set up by Equal Justice Initiative - a non- profit organisation that works to advance national reconsideration around race.
  • USA’s first memorial dedication to the legacy of enslaved black people.
  • “This is something our children need to know, so they can understand the struggle”
  • “Keenan, a Native American, said she would never visit the memorial and was worried it would exacerbate “racism”
  • “It’s going to cause an uproar and open old wounds”

Image result for The National Memorial for Peace and Justice:

These are jars filled with soil from the sites of killings:

  • Objects and their agency
  • Consider again 

Image result for These are jars filled with soil from the sites of killings:

The Judenplatz Holocaust Memorial:

  • The Nameless Library stands in Judenplatz of Vienna.
  • It is the central memorial for the Austrian victims of the Holocaust.
  • British artist Rachel Whiteread
  • This memorial is closed with no windows.
  • A pair of doors at one end of the building are sealed shut.
  • A single storey building
  • The walls new covered from top to bottom in row upon row of books.
  • We can see the edges of the book covers, the closed pages.
  • An inverted library in concrete, the proportions are derived from those found in a room in a house in the square.
  • Histories and stories.
  • Writer, James Edward Young calls it an counter memorial.

Image result for The Judenplatz Holocaust Memorial:

Criticisms included:

  • Too cryptic to accept.
  • Whiteread, the sculptor was not Jewish.
  • Loss of business.
  • A loss of car parking spaces.
  • The square would be ‘disfigured by the concrete colossus’
  • The memorial might become a target for Neo-Nazis.

Edwin Lutyens’ Cenotaph 1920, Whitehall, London:

  • Lutyens’ design was criticised by some for its complete lack of Christian symbolism.
  • He wanted forms which had meaning “irrespective of creed or caste”.
  • Originally intended to be a temporary structure, of wood and plaster, translated into Portland stone.
  • Cenotaph means ‘empty tomb’.
  • There are no names inscribed on the Cenotaph, which allowed individuals to assign their own meaning to the memorial. 

Image result for Edwin Lutyens’ Cenotaph 1920, Whitehall, London:

Gilsangsa Temple:

  • Seoul-based studio Wise Architecture, on top of the foundations an older temple.
  • This prayer hall was dedicated to victims of the Sewal, South Korea Ferry disaster, killing 304 passengers, Bamboo and steel. A temporary instillation.
  • A prayer site for 1,000 days from 30 August 2014 

Image result for Gilsangsa Temple:

The Steinset Memorial, Varde, Norway:

  • Commemorates the trial and execution in 1621 of 91 people for witchcraft. 
  • A collaboration with Peter Zumthor and Louise Bourgeois. Architect and Artist combining their ideas together. Bourgeois’ idea about burning and the aggression and Zumthor’s ideas more about life and the emotions.
  • Bourgeois’s installation, The Damned, The Possessed and the Beloved contains an endless flame burning on a steel chair, positioned within a hollow concrete cone.
  • A perpetual flame is often used in memorials-signifying commemoration and reflection. Here is a devoid of any redemptive quality. This is about destruction.
  • Zumthor’s dark, narrow interior. 

Image result for The Steinset Memorial, Varde, Norway:

Spontaneous shrines/ temporary memories:

  • Example: Grenfell
  • Public grief, sharing, controlling aesthetics?
  • Some of the objects used have ritual or religious significance.
  • People participate in the making of sites, or their sites.
  • A memorial/shrine does not need to be permanent but sometimes if issues the memorial presents are still relevant they are a good way to protest/highlight/remember such as the Grenfell incident.

Image result for grenfell shrine

Conter memorials:

Questions to think about:

What do you think the phrase counter memorial means? 

  • Definition of counter-memorial: an answer admitting, denying, or commenting on charges in a memorial in international law. Examples: White poppies, Red poppies (only males) inclusinty? Eg- Rachel Whiteread Memorial 

What is a memorial?

Can be anything.. a collective of people showing respect.. an event, parade, movement. Have emotional connections and memories, while also being often temporary. 

What is a monument?

 A structure/art, often with no particular history, temporary, official. The Eiffel Tower and London Eye were meant to be temporary. 

What is a Shrine?

Made by the people- in Thailand they have spirit houses which are shrines.  

Does a public memorial strengthen urban memory?

Societal memory.. city memory.. a memorial for group of people often strengthens the memory. 

Who is to chose what/who is remembered?

It would be good if it was the people however it is most likely the government. I think that everyone should have a view/chose what is remembered. However, I also think that the people effected by incidents should chose as it is personal. We should fight for the memorials we want.

 Do memorials have the power to influence society’s sociological structure? 

For sure. If they are big, in a busy place and of a topic which the majority feel passionate about they will influence society. However this can work in an opposite way too. Many memorials are not well know, not relevant to the majority and forgotten by many; just taking up a space. I for one cannot name all of the memorials from Trafalgar Square to university, presenting this.

 Should designers create the memorials? Or the people?I think it should be collective; designers and normal people. 

Should memorials exist?

I think so, yes, as they hold the history of the events taken place which is important and has shaped the way we live now. It also keep the memory of past events on going, as well as lives the lives of people involved.

 Do you think memorials are political?

Yes. Biased towards.. one side/set of people over the event which has happened. They often act as a way to drive an agenda. Someone has to pay to build it.. those people always have an agenda.. 

Objects Video Notes: 30/10/19

Objects by Grace Adam

Object definition:  A thing you can see or touch that is not usually a living animal, plant, or person. 

  • Found objects is an art term- (sometimes referred to by the French term for found object ‘object trouvé)


  • Michael Landy, Costermonger’s Borrow II 

Image result for Michael Landy, Costermongers Barrow II

  • Marcel Duchamp Dart Object - 1951 (plays with the phrase)  

Image result for Marcel Duchamp Dart Object

  • Jeff Koons - Three Ball total Equilibrium Tank (Two Dr J Silver Series, Spalding NBA Tip-off) 1985 (basket balls)  

Image result for Jeff Koons - Three Ball total Equilibrium Tank

  • Tony Cragg- collections of objects to make sculptures. Britain Seen From The North: typical for his work, consists of many individual objects, arranged to form a larger image. It can be described as a ‘relationship of the part to the whole’, an idea derived from particle physics.  
  • Image result for Tony Cragg- britain seen from the north
  • All objects have politics attached them 
  • Readymade : The term readymade was first used by French artist Marcel Duchamp to describe the works of art he made from manufactured objects. It has since often been applied more generally to artworks by other artists made in this way. God, Elsa Baroness von Freytag-Loringhoven, 1917
  • According to Duchamp “The choice of the object is itself a creative act.” 
  • By cancelling the ‘useful’ function of an object it becomes art. 
  • The presentation and addition of a title to the object have given it ‘a new thought’, a new meaning.
  • Readymades supported Duchamp’s argument that what is art is defined by the artist.
  • Example: Bicycle Wheel, Duchamp, 1913. 

Image result for Bicycle Wheel, Duchamp

  • Man Ray - takes an iron which he takes and calls Cadeau/give - not a pleasant gift, it has spikes down the middle. 1921 - 1971 - replica.  

Image result for Man Ray - Cadeau/give

  • Cornelia Parker - Thirty pieces of silver. No longer useable, the objects become representative of a past function.

Image result for cornelia Parker - Thirty pieces of silver

  • Mark Dion - Tate Thames Dig 2000. Objects taken from the thames, cleaned and classified and then arranged as if they were in a museum. London’s historical wealth can be attributed to the Thames. (clay pipes, vividly decorated shards of delftware, oyster shells, and plastic toys.) 

Image result for mark dion thames dig

  • Open-design movement: Involves the development of physical products, machines and systems through the use of publicly shared design information. 
  • Cody Wilson, USA, Founded the defence distributed in 2012. (The Liberator) In 2013, he fired the world’s first 3D printed gun. 100,000 people across the world downloaded the drawings. This changes the way we think about new manufacturing technologies and the unregulated sharing of designs online.
  • Hacked criminal spray bottles held to protesters’ eyes suggest violence, but are actually used to help the affects of violence. 
  • Baseballs go for a playful object to an object which inflicts violence. Kiev Political protests. The baseball bat morphs from playful to punitive design. 
  • Gendered objects. 
  • Pat Kirkham, editor of the Gendered Object (1996), “At one level, the gendering of objects is an extremely complex process, which sometimes seems impossible to elucidate, yet the over-over-determination of coding involved in the construction of certain objects as ‘male’ or ‘female’ can sometimes seem crude, almost comical.”
  • Bic pens, tissues, tool kits in pink.. different language used on the same shampoo bottles. For women and for men..
  • Meret Oppenheim (German-Swiss, 1913-1985) Made a place 
  • Agency: The capacity, condition, or state of acting or of exerting power; a person or thing through which power is exerted or an end is achieved. 
  • Objects are appropriated, objectified and re-contextualized over space and time- for example, the actual materiality of the object sets limits on its social function, its production and its modification through subsequent cultural transformation of value through exchange and whether as gift or commodity (Thomas, 1991). Stick chart, 19th Century navigation chart. Marshall islands. Wood, small shells. National museum of Denmark, Copenhagen.

Should objects be gendered?

  • Objects that should be gendered.. a bicycle seat, beauty products (due to different hormones). 
  • Objects that shouldn’t be gendered.. furniture, food (yorkie bar- marketing trick as they are widely available but make you feel like they are exclusive), Children’s toys. 
  • Aiming objects at gender is often based as a marketing tool (Gender based products)
  • Terminology used to describe objects.. feminine and masculine words.. 
  • High heels - originally made for men to ride horses, and appear taller. Now they are used by women as a beauty accessory. 
  • When an object presented in a gallery.. we begin to start thinking about it differently, more intensely.  
  • Should be more focused on the use rather than the gender.

What is my understanding of the agency of an object?

  • The agency of an object is where power is exerted through the object.

Can objects have agency?

  • Yes they can. We view objects as having different levels of power. We view designer objects to hold more status and to be more desirable than none branded objects. 

What do you understand by this phrase? “The invisibility of the design scripts that are hidden within objects we use every day, that channel certain stereotypes.” 

  • The phrase is presenting the issues objects present as they portray hidden stereotypes which are often negative. Stereotypes are hidden within objects we use everyday, especially in children's toys. Examples of gender stereotypes being in Toys R US there are pink tiles and blue tiles. The pink tiles are targeted at girls' selling dresses, dolls and kitchen sets while the blue tiles targeted at boys, selling action men, cars and tool sets. Presenting gender stereotypes in objects that are targeted at us from birth. 

1st lecture - 25/9/10

Some ideas and movements in the 20th and 21st century

  • 1930s – copper, brass, velvet. World of recession
  • Cubinism, futurism, expressionism.. the movements
  • Arts and Crafts movement – William Morris 1863. The Strawberry Thief
  • Design for everyone
  •  Form an opinion on graft 
  • Modernism can be and is everywhere – a way of thinking (Seagran building – New York)
  • Modernism in design and architecture- emerged in the aftermath of WW2
  • A global movement 
  • Industrialisation. Social change (heirarchy’s) 
  • Social science – Floyd 
  • New ideas in psychology, philosophy and political theory 
  • Le Corbuser and Pierre Jeaneret 
  • “A house is a machine for living in” – Villa Savoye (Think science)
  • A utopian spirit. A belief in progress
  • Gibberd Bishopsfields Estate, Harrow and Excalibur estate – His idea of eutopia 
  • Neave Brown – Alexandra road estate, Camden, 1972
  • 66 Old Church Street – 1936 (hey few curves)
  • Rectangular of Cubist shapes, Open plan, Steel, Large windows..
  • Modernism – a movement that started in Europe 
  •  A symmetrical composition – metal and brass framework 


  • All about simplicity, natural lights and clean spaces 
  • A rejection of decoration and applied omanent
  • A preference for abstraction
  • Abstract form, less is more.. Ludwig Mies, Van Der Rohe (1856-1969)
  • Barcelona Povilian – a sence of order, Latria Airport – Chapter Riga
  • Royal collage of physics
  • Bauhaus – famous design school about modernism (school of arts and crafts)
  • Penguin Donkey


  • Rules are broken. Modernism has strict rules. Stattered, established ideas about style, taste, history.
  • New wave – Alessi
  • Wearing sports wear.. but not doing sport (for comfort, fashion)
  • Clashing is back in 
  • A drastic departure of modernisms eutopia’s views
  • Arte Povera (poor art) Not made out of traditional materials (bubble wrap, newspaper, bubble gum etc..)
  • Mono-Ha (school of things)
  • Damien Hirst, Mona Hatoum, Anreas Gursky 

Unit 1 Word Glossary


Analogy: A comparison between one thing and another, typically for the purpose of explanation or clarification

Arts & Crafts movement: The Arts and Crafts movement in Britain in the late 19th century marked the beginning of a change in the value society placed on how things were made. This was a reaction to not only the damaging effects of industrialisation but also the relatively low status of the decorative arts. Arts and Crafts reformed the design and manufacture of everything from buildings to jewellery.

Assemblage: A collection or gathering of things or people

Arte povera: Meaning poor art was a radical Italian art movement from the late 1960s to 1970s whose artists explored a range of unconventional processes and non traditional ‘everyday’ materials

Banal: Lacking in originality as to be obvious and boring

Bourgeois: Belonging to or characteristic of the middle class, typically with reference to its perceived materialistic values or conventional attitudes.

Brutalism: A stark style of functionalist architecture, especially of the 1950s and 1960s, characterised by the use of steel and concrete in massive blocks

Crit: A review of a literary or artistic work or production


Component: A part or element of a larger whole, especially a part of a machine or vehicle

Constructivism: A style or movement in which assorted mechanical objects are combined into abstract mobile structural forms. The movement originated in Russia in the 1920s and has influenced many aspects of modern architecture and design

Conceptual: Relating to or based on mental concepts 

Dysfunctional: Abnormality of an object causing it to not function the way it should 

Dada: An early 20th-century movement in art, literature, music, and film, repudiating and mocking artistic and social conventions and emphasising the illogical and absurd


Depiction: The action of depicting something, especially in a work of art

Dissect: Analyse (a text or idea) in minute detail

Doctrine: A belief or set of beliefs held and taught by a Church, political party, or other group

Dogma: A principle or set of principles laid down by an authority as incontrovertibly true

Dystopia: An imagined state or society in which there is great suffering or injustice, typically one that is totalitarian or post-apocalyptic

Eccentric: (of a person or their behaviour) unconventional and slightly strange

Ethos: The characteristic spirit of a culture, era, or community as manifested in its attitudes and aspirations

Ethereal: Extremely delicate and light in a way that seems not to be of this world

Formality: A thing that is done simply to comply with conversation, regulations or custom 

Function: A practical use or purpose in design

Futurism: An artistic movement begun in Italy in 1909, which strongly rejected traditional forms and embraced the energy and dynamism of modern technology. Launched by Filippo Marinetti, it had effectively ended by 1918 but was widely influential, particularly in Russia on figures such as Malevich and Mayakovsky.

Gadget: A small mechanical or electronic device or tool, especially an ingenious or novel one

Geometry: The shape and relative arrangements of the parts of something 

Herative: Doing something again and again to improve it 

Hybridisation: Combining objects or ideas to form one outcome 

Intervention: An action taken to intentionally become involved in a different situation

Incite: Encourage or stir up 

Iconic: Relating to or of the nature of an icon

Incongruous: Not in harmony or keeping with the surroundings or other aspects of something

Immaterial: Unimportant under the circumstances; irrelevant

Installation: The action of installing someone or something, or the state of being installed

Juxtaposition: The fact of two things being seen or placed close together with contrasting effect

Modernism: ‘a style or movement in the arts that’s aims to depart from classical or traditional forms’

Manifesto: A public declaration of policy and aims, especially one issued before an election by a political party or candidate

Matrix: The cultural, social, or political environment in which something develops

Minimalism: A movement in sculpture and painting which arose in the 1950s, characterised by the use of simple, massive forms

Multi-function: Having or fulfilling several functions 

Myth: A traditional story, especially one concerning the early history of a people or explaining a natural or social phenomenon, and typically involving supernatural beings or events

Narrative: A spoken or written account of connected events; a story


Propositional: Relating to, consisting of, or based on propositions.

Primitivism: A belief in the value of what is simple and unsophisticated, expressed as a philosophy of life or through art or literature

Pin up: Pinning up work 

Post-modernism: ‘late 20th century style and concept in the arts, architecture and criticism that represents a departure from modernism’ often involving a mixture of different styles

Polemic: A strong verbal or written attack on something or someone

Purpose: The reason for which something exists 

Position: A place where something or someone has been put or located 

Rationalism: The practice or principle of basing opinions and actions on reason and knowledge rather than on religious belief or emotional response

Romanticism: A movement in the arts and literature that originated in the late 18th century, emphasising inspiration, subjectivity, and the primacy of the individual

Symbolic: Significant purely in terms of what is being represented or implied

Speculative: Engaged in, expressing, or based on conjecture rather than knowledge

Sublime: Producing an overwhelming sense of awe or other high emotion through being vast or grand

Suprematism: The Russian abstract art movement developed by Kazimir Malevich c. 1915, characterised by simple geometrical shapes and associated with ideas of spiritual purity

Surreal: Having the qualities of surrealism; bizarre

Taboo: A social or religious custom prohibiting or restricting a particular practice or forbidding association with a particular person, place, or thing.

Taxonomy: The branch of science concerned with classification, especially of organisms; systematics

Transgression: An act that goes against a law, rule, or code of conduct; an offence

Typology: A classification according to general type, especially in archaeology, psychology, or the social sciences. The study and interpretation of types and symbols, originally especially in the Bible.

Utopia: An imagined place or state of things in which everything is perfect

Vernacular: The language or dialect spoken by the ordinary people in a particular country or region. Architecture concerned with domestic and functional rather than public or monumental buildingsUn

Rituals Video Notes: 20/11/19

Ritual’s Lecture.

Rituals Definition: A religious or solemn ceremony consisting of a series of actions performed according to a prescribed order. 

Or a series of actions or type of behaviour regularly and invariably followed by someone.

Emic view point: Studying behaviour from inside a particular system, the way the actual people understand what they do and think. 

Etic view point: Studies behaviour from outside of a particular system. The observer. The researcher. 

Repetition: Reinforced the beliefs of the group by fixing them firmly in the memory of those who participate in its rituals. 

  • Rituals rely heavily on repetition. 

Marshall island Stick Chart:

  • When the islanders went fishing in the turbulent, shark-infested waters beyond the coral reef, they performed specific rituals to invoke magical powers for their safety and protection. 
  • These charts, unlike traditional maps, were studied and memorized prior to a voyage. They were not consulted during a trip, and were blessed before a voyage.
  • Wave patterns, currents and islands. 

Image result for Marshall island Stick Chart

Synchrony: Key to many rituals because it increases social cohesion, one of the main purposes of ritualistic behaviour. 

Example: New Zealand’s All Blacks rugby team, the haka is a traditional Maori dance. 

Rhythmic activities:

  • Such as dancing and chanting simulate the release of endorphins: neuropeptides that promote a sense of connection and trust. 
  • Examples: Concerts, solstice gatherings

Catherine Bell states: “ritual is also invariant, implying careful choreography.”

Rituals of solidarity are very common. Shared, choreographed activities in support of a system or belief. 

The Rite of Ordination to become a Catholic Priest, takes place within the context of a mass. Prostration, (lying on the floor, face down), can carry the symbolism of death-the death to self that comes before the candidate’s rebirth into priestly service. 

Formalism: Ritual utilises a limited and rigidly organised set of expressions, which anthropologists call restricted code. 


  • Ritual produces conformity according to Maurice Bloch.
  • Ritual communication uses a special, restricted vocabulary.
  • Restrictive grammer.
  • Ritual utterances become very predictable. 

Hindu Marriage ceremony with seven steps. 

Catholic Wedding ceremony. Another restrictive code. 

Votive: Offered, given, dedicated, etc.. in accordance with a vow. 

A Votive Offering:

  • An object
  • Displayed or deposited
  • Not to be used
  • In a scared place for religion purposes.
  • Made in order to gain favour with supernatural forces. 

Example: Bronze animal statuettes from Olympia, voice offering, 8th-7th century BC. 

Image result for Example: Bronze animal statuettes from Olympia, voice offering, 8th-7th century BC.

Ex Voto Paintings:

  • The purpose of the painting is to give testimony and thanks for ‘divine’ help. They use familiar, every day objects and spaces. 

Mexican example:

Image result for Ex Voto Paintings MEXICAN

Silver Catholic Ex Votes: often in the shape of an organ, or healed part of the body. 

Related image

A rite of passage definition:

  • It is a ceremony of the passage, which occurs when an individual leaves one group to enter another.
  • It involves a significant change of status in society.
  • What rites of passages have you been through?


  • Annette Messager looks at received ideas, familiar narratives, myths and rituals. She looks at death through her work. She clothed dozens of taxidermies sparrows in tiny knitted garments. 
  • The Boarders. 1972, it is about received ideas, familiar narratives, myths and rituals, death. 

More familiar rituals:

  • Shopping - Christine Dior, Paris. Is laid out to encourage clear buying behaviours. 
  • Interiors facilitate out rituals.

Sonia Boyce: Missionary Position II

  • Boyce uses the ritual of prayer to symbolise conflicting opinions about religious beliefs across different generations and cultures in British society. 

Image result for Sonia Boyce: Missionary Position II

Jeremy Deller, Alan Kane: Looks at more mundane rituals, the British ritual of making tea

Example: Souped up Urn and Teapot 2004.

Image result for Example: Souped up Urn and Teapot 2004.


  • Ritual as a theme in art doesn’t always show a ritual actually happening. Artists often reference ritual through objects or materials. 
  • Artist Paul Neagu used his own body in events which he called ‘rituals’. His ‘palpable’ objects and ‘tactile’ boxes were made to be touched, opened and moved. 

Paul Neagu - Great Tactile Table

Image result for Paul Neagu - Great Tactile Table

Rasheed Areen uses his photography to explore his identity as a Muslim in British society, through photographs which reference Islamic ritual. Example: Bismullah, (in the name of God)

More Examples:

Henry Moore - Mask 1929

Rebecca Horn - Pencil Mask 1972

The idea of a mask. 

Reminds the viewer of elaborate ritual performances. 

  • Shapes and patterns are associated with particular rituals. 

Example: Richard Wright’s Untitled III

  • Geometric Abstraction, Op art and Minimalism - and patterns derived from Medieval manuscripts, Gothic and Baroque architectural decoration and tattoo and biker- jacket motifs. 

Image result for Richard Wright’s Untitled III



Comfort (coffee helps me get out of bed..) 


Habitual - auto pilot

Morning and bedtime ritual 

Rituals can change 

Mordern day rituals: snoozing alarms in the morning, checking social media in bed in the morning, catching up on what you’ve missed when asleep.. 

Mobile phones, always in hand

Mindfulness and wellbeing 

Relaxation - candles.. candles are also used in spiritual rituals

Greeting people/introducing people to each other


Getting on the same train everyday.. 

Are rituals always positive?

Addiction, cults etc.. 

Rituals can be both positive and negative. Rituals order a space, giving extra meaning to it, in that moment while you are doing the ritual. 


Home Part 4 Lecture Notes:

Home Part 4 Notes: 


Just what is it that makes today’s homes so different? Richard Hamilton, 1992:

  • Things have changed a lot.. computer, music system, microwave. This is supposedly a state of the art home, and Hamilton highlights peoples necessity to have the newest things at all time.. consumerism. 

Rachel Whiteread. House, 1993 British artist: 

  • “House makes a point about the smallness and fragility of the spaces we actually live in, worry about, decorate.. all those things that are part of life.”
  • Mould made from a house. East end London. Road of terrace houses. She filled one with concrete and the house was then pealed away leaving traces of all those lives, additions, bits of decorating, all that had changed over the hundreds of years..
  • It's been demolished now.


Jeff Wall. Photographer and artist who makes very interesting observations of everyday life. He actually fakes it: View from an apartment. 2004 Tate.

  • Actors and. Stage set - he fools you into thinking things are real, makes you believe that photography tells you the truth. 

View From an Apartment .jpg

Mona Hatoum. Home 1999:

  • Quote - “I called it Home, because I see it as a work that shatters notions of the wholesomeness of the home envirnonment, the household , and the domain where the feminine resides. Having always had an ambiguious relationship with notions of family, home,, and the nurturing that is expected out of this situation. I often like the psychological disturbance to contradict those expectations.” 

We have talked about home being a place of refuge where you can make and remake yourself.. here, Hatoum questions that. On the table there are all different kitchen utensils which used in the right way are not threatening, used in a different way, they are weapons. 

Wille Doherty, photograph - The Bridge, 1992: 

  • A bridge between two party of Derry, in Ireland. Two religious communities separated, divided, and connected by this bridge. 

An Ideal Home. Bruce Maclean. 

  • Prints across the top of his images- some of the words, advertising campaigns, slogans when we see when we are being persuaded to buy things for our homes. 

An ideal home.jpg

Gregor Schneider - The Haus ur Totes Haus/ Dead House 2011:

  • Germany. Interesting intervention into this ordinary looking house. The rooms are built inside other rooms. Rooms that were hidden, threatening and quite extraordinary. Undermining home as a place of safety. 

Absalon, Cell no 1 - 1992:

  • Made a series of cells 
  • Wood, fibreboard, fabric and fluorescent lights 
  • 3.58 (insert text) 
  • From an interior design point of view it is interesting about the requirements he needs for his body.. his mind.. his rituals.. in what he calls a cell. The drawings shows are what he uses to work them out.


Do Ho Soh. Home within a Home within a Home within a Home within a Home:

  • National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (MMCA) in Seoul. 2013. 
  • Made from layers of netting. The light goes through the layers and each place lives within a place.  

Staircase III:

  • Interested in the bits of the home we forget. (Home within a home is grand..)
  • Staircase in an apartment he lived in, he has recorded the broken banister and additional light switches which has been put in..  a forgotten space

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Dusk 2 (2007): 

  • Found Desert in america. An abandoned house. Re configured it. Re built it and kind of dressed it as a dollhouse with a piece of prospects. Then look at a degraded home, the idea of what home was meant to be.. 

The dollhouse.jpg

Margaret Harrison - Little Woman at Home 1971: 

  • Feminist art. Harrison questions all the things women should be doing in the home. 

Akram Zaatari - Hnayneh Madani’s parents’ home, the Liwan, Saida, Lebanon, 1948-53. Hashem el Madani, 2007:

  • Photograph. Quiet, intimate, formal - the little boy has his shirt on, fresh flowers, table cloth. But if you look closely you can see all the props of this home - putting together a narrative of what this persons life is like, the kind of family he lives within.

Sun in an Empty Room, 1963 by Edward Hopper: 

  • Interesting image as it is an empty place, there are no props in it. But being a human being we bring a story/narrative - has somebody moved out? Died? Is this a derelict place? Where is it? In a forest? City? 
  • Everyone can create their own story - everyone can look at this painting and view it differnt.. just like we all view homelessness differently. 

Sun in an empty room.jpg

Luc Tuymans, 4am:

  • Making quiet and mysterious paintings of places he’s occupied. He’s woken up at 4am and this is what he sees. 

Luc Tuymans, Bedroom 2014:

  • Lie in bed, look up and see the light fitting 

Yayoi Kusama: Obliteration Room, 2011: 

  • Airbnb -made a deal. Competition
  • Artist will transform the winner’s room into an artwork.

Obliteration room.jpg

Semi-detached 2004 - Michal Landy:

  • Devine gallery - Tate 
  • Working class life.
  • Identity
  • Usefulness
  • The home
  • Landy wanted to consider what happens to identity when you are no longer part of a productive system.
  • His father had been working his whole life and then became ill and wasn’t able to work anymore and was kind of confined to his home. About working class homes. About ideas and usefulness and about the home. 


House of my Father 1996:

  • Donald Rodney
  • Someways a self portrait. This tiny home made from his skin, he suffered and was very sick, a portrait of himself from himself..
  • Identity
  • Sickness
  • Fragility 

House of my father .jpg

Paula Rego. The Family:

  • Is he home safe? An ambiguous, dangerous, political place.
  • Family scences, nursery rhymes, children stories.. talks about the home being a safe place.
  • Is this a safe place? You bring a narrative to this image.

Phyllida Barlow - Upturned House. 2012:

  • Manipulation - Accumulation
  • “How I’m physically negotiating the spaces is often more important than the object itself. They are obstacles to be navigated, protagonists that I feel I’m encountering.”
  • The house is almost too big for the gallery space 

Upturned house.jpg

  • A Surrealist approach to home/house Louise Bourgeois 
  • A surrealist and made lots of work around the idea of femininity, femaleness  
  • The home, our roles, our rituals 
  • The materials she uses are interesting - soap, fabric, marble, felt

Beirut Caoutchouc 2004-2008:

  • Marvan Rechmaoui 
  • The green line that divided Christian and Muslim communities during the Lebanese civil war (1975-90) is absent.
  • This art piece maps a terrain empty of political and religious divisions. (perhaps the home he wants)
  • It uses rubber to represent the cities resilience. 

What is home?

Where is home?

What is family?

Is a home a battle ground? A place of refuge?

Is it political? Are their hierarchies?

How does the architecture, how do the interiors shape your behaviours?

What are your rituals? Does your home facilitate them?

Home Part 3 Lecture Notes:

Home Part 3 Notes:


We can’t think about home without thinking about:

  • Homelessness 
  • Solutions 

Definition of a refugee: “A person who has been forced to leave their country in order to escape war, persecution, or natural disaster.

  • Architecture is a witness to human suffering (Richard Peter, Dresden After Ailsed Raids, bombing, Germany 1945) 2nd world war.

Don McCullin is an interesting photographer: Mother and Son, Bradford 1978

  • A relatively short time ago, look at the way these people live.. 
  • McCullin is very good at photographing and emphasising with his subjects. 

Mother and Son.jpg

  • 6,500 people sleep rough on the streets of London every year. 
  • 1,079 people sleep rough every night in Westminster. (image of the Ritz)
  • Peoples lives moving at the same time… we can ignore them if we try.. get caught up in our own busy lives. 
  • In London every day 15 more people are sleeping rough for the first time 
  • Architecture responds to this.. you will see aggressive pieces of architecture throughout London and other cities which on the face may seem friendly and a place to sit down. But actually is designed to stop people loitreing, sleeping, sitting when they don’t have other places to go.
  • Royal Courts of Justice -Interestingly outside the Royal Courts of Justice which would be very hard to sleep on.

Royal Courts of Justice Bench.jpg

  • The Camden Bench - you can perch on it while waiting for a bus but their is no way you could sleep on it.. 

 Camden Bench.jpg

  • Spikes often put on the fronts of hotels, offices .. again to stop people spending time there.

Waukesha, Wisconsin, United States:

  • Fascinating photography from Georgaphic magazine. A photograph of three lives happening in parallel. The guy sleeping or collapsed outside of the coffee shop and the two women inside3 who clearly think the photograph is about them. They are happy, smiling, getting on with their day and these lives are not crossing over although they are so near each other. 

Gardens: Dutch photographer Henk Wildschut travelled to Shousha refugee camp, Tunisia, 2011:

  • No longer exists 
  • Crazy to think people in such stressful situations still make homes. This is a picture of a places laid out like a home with a garden.

Refugee Gardens.jpg

The Global Soul - book extract:

  • Talks about somebody who was thinking in an abstract way about homelessness and then becomes homeless 

“When I arrived at my house, high up on a ridge, two-thirds of the way up the mountain, it was to find a smoking ash tray sea. Bronze statues had been reduced to nothing; filing cabinets were husks. All the props of my parents’ sixty years, all the notes and prospects I’d been collecting for fifteen years, all the photographs, memories - all the past - gone.

I’d often referred to myself as homeless - an Indian born in England and moving to California as a boy, with no real base of operations or property even in my thirties. I’d spent much of the previous year among the wooden houses of Japan, reading the “burning house” poems of Buddhist monks and musing on the value of living without possessions and a home. But now all the handy metaphors were actual, and the lines of the poems, included in the manuscript that was the only thing in my shoulder bag when I fled, were my only real foundations for a new fin de siècie life.

  •  Andy Palfreeman: photographed all of doorways he slept in as a homeless person.

Home Part 2 Lecture Notes:

Home Part 2 Notes:


How our homes are laid out influences our behaviours:

London Victorian homes: 

Quotation from a book called ideal homes: The ideal Victorian home is therefore more accurately defined as a kind of battleground: a place of constant struggle to maintain privacy, security and respectability in a dangerous world.” 

Are those things relevant to me in my home? Ie respectability, privacy and security.

Is it a dangerous world?

Victorian home: Front of the house for people who lived there, back of the house, also for people who lived there but for people who worked as servants or served the people at the front.. Tiny bedrooms for maids.. 

Hierarchies, Relationships and Power are all supported by architecture.. Power structures.

Is the home a complex arrangement of spaces. A place for family rituals. A ‘display cabinet’ of social virtues. Still true?

  • Home is a place where space and time are controlled and structured functionally, economically, aesthetically and morally and where domestic communitarian practices are realised. (Rapport and Dawson, 1998: 6; Douglas 1991).
  • Communitarianism: Is a philosophy that emphasises the connection between the individual and the community. The community might be a family unit.. 
  • William S. Sax - “People and the places where they reside are engaged in a continuing set of exchanges; they have determinate, mutual effects upon each other because they are part of a single, interactive system.”
  • The architecture, the house, the family, the ritual.. all roles into one system.

Pleasant Hill. Shaker village. KY, USA.

  • Two front doors. Men live on one side, women live on the other.. 
  • They invited people to join their families.. even though they are divided by their gender it is a family unit. 
  • Isolation
  • Communal Living 
  • Looking in 
  • Religious communities quite often isolate themselves geographically, architecturally from other places. IG - The monastery of Saint Catherine is the Sinai of Egypt. 565 AD. Very hard to get to, very isolated.. looks like a fortress, very self sufficient. 
  • Pierre Thilbault, Abbaye Val Notre Dame, France - self sufficiant.. the same thing
  • Watkhaobuddahkodom, Chonburi Province - Thailand, completed 2009-2010
  • Facilitates the walking meditation the monks do - daily ritual. The architecture they have had built, enables them to practice what they need to on a daily basis. A family unit as such and the architecture in the same system.
  • Suriya Umpansiriratana’s “Monk Cell Project” turns the monastery itself into a symbolic visualisation of a monk’s spartan routines.
  • Solitary confinement cell at IIa in Norway - Minimal aesthetic
  • Air B&B in Mexico - Luxury
  • They do have things in common : The spareness, clearly content is important..
  • Difference to being alone and lonely.. choosing to be alone
  • Dzochen, Sichuan Tibet, 2011 - Alone, Lonely
  • Structures found, adapted, built.. which facilitate living solo
  • Difference in behaviours when we are alone or with our family.

Dementia village built for people in Denmark :

Residence who live here have their old homes replicated because change is hard to deal with and adjust too. It looks like where they used to live but they can’t leave so is this protection, imprisonment, security, familiarity. Can it be all of those things?

Home Part 1 Lecture Notes:

Homes Part 1 Notes:


  • Everyone we have ever met has lived on the earth. Our planet is a lonely spec in the cosmic dark. 
  • 49% of 20 to 24 year olds live in the family home 
  • In 2016 there were 65 million people in the UK, 7.7 million lived alone and most of them were women

Home definitions:

  • The place where one lives permanently, especially as a member of a family or household. - Oxford English Dictionary.
  • Where are you?
  • Someone’s or something’s place of origin, or the place where a person feels they belong. - Cambridge English Dictionary.

 Which one of those is home for me? - For me I wouldn’t say that a place makes my home feel like my home as I have lived in many different places and homes. I would say it is about the people I am living with, my family that make my house feel like a home. So the top definition would voice my definition of a home. 

  • Home is (a) place, (a) space, feelings, practices and/or an active state of being in the world.
  • Home is an interaction between place and social relationships (what you do with the people you know and love)
  • People have been debating the idea of home for hundreds of years - “There is nothing more admirable than when two people who see eye to eye keep house as man and wife, confounding their enemies and delighting their friends.” - Homer, The Odyssey 8C, BC.
  • If you type in ‘Home’ on google you get the stereotypical images of a home which are informed by the dominant cultures 
  • Home is a powerful idea, used cleverly by the media to sell us things : ie Ikea, British Gas, Halifax, John Lewis.. 
  • Nostalgia is important in ideas of selling ‘Home’ to us, as it was always better in the past… Habit 1971, House by John Lewis 2015 
  • Western conceptions of home privilege a physical structure or dwelling, such as a house, flat, institution or caravan 

Zadie Smith, White Teeth, 2000 - “These days, it feels to me like you make a devil’s pact when you walk into this country. You hand over your passport at the check-in, you get stamped, you want to make a little money, get yourself started..  but you mean to go back! Who would want to stay? Cold, wet, miserable; terrible food, dreadful newspapers - who would want to stay? In a place where you are never welcomed, only tolerated. Just tolerated. Like you are an animal finally house-trained. 

Transnational : Extending or operating across national boundaries 

  • The assumption that people will live their lives in one place, according to our set of national and cultural norms, in countries with impermeable national borders, is not longer true!
  • ‘Home’ can be more than one place of emotional or physical importance.

Notion of family:

  • The notion of family is broad (and changing) and encompasses a variety of different social structures beyond the classic conception of the nuclear family.
  • For most people, notions of home are intimately tied to notions of family
  • A network society and the pervasiveness of digital technologies means that the boundaries between our home lives and working lives are blurred 
  • Digital technologies help us mediate the absences that come from periods of working or studying away from home
  • Rituals are part of family life

Wolin and Bennet have defined family ritual as “a symbolic form of communication that, owing to the satisfaction that family members experience through its reception, is acted out in a systematic fashion over time. 

Bringing family groups together :

  • Family film viewing
  • Religious practice, Puja as part of the ‘home’
  • Birthday candles (celebrations) Home