Early architectural education

This sketchbook page, by U leong To, illustrates the analysis of sound on site. In the 19th century some architects wished to achieve the respectability of professional status. Value and status were restored to those undertaking this less ‘academic’ approach. As more schools were established, the previous system of apprenticeships or articled pupillage declined, until by the 1920s most trainee architects received formal training at an institution of higher education. The founding manifesto and programme for the school under its first director, Walter Gropius, stated that art cannot be taught but that craft and manual skill could be. ln addition to sketches, diagrams, notes, site information, precedent images and trial pieces for the project itself, a sketchbook may also contain ideas for other (sometimes future) projects and is a place to record sources of general inspiration such as quotations, work seen at exhibitions, on field trips and while travelling. In the UK, in 1831, a Royal Charter awarded the title of architect to professionals, and membership of the Royal Institute of British Architects began. Learning as an apprentice within a professional environment inevitably fostered a mentoring or ‘master/pupil’ relationship and this was often translated in a very literal way as higher education began to develop. They would reach back to the idea of apprenticeships and focus on the experience of making in the school’s workshops, under the supervision of the skilled studio masters. Such privilege also brought responsibility and so more structure and formality was introduced into architectural training.

Updated: 27.10.2014 — 20:50