Translations between Architectural Media

The model’s significance as a medium for both design and presentation is the subject of the last chapter and brings together the object, its makers and its audience. It focusses on the translation of ideas through different architectural media and their subsequent uses in mass media. This process is based both on “editing out” and “adding to” the architectural idea which adjusts according to each medium’s representational capabilities. The chapter addresses the techniques used in these processes of translation. Focusing on two auxiliary objects, model drawing and photo model, the gaps between the different media become visible. Connected to individual professions in the architectural network, they are seen as opportunities for interpretation and contribution to an architectural idea.  Model photography and spatial installations become discernible as part of a larger three-dimensional shift away from drawings and renderings towards modeling.

Whereas model drawings can only be looked at as translational tools between drawing and model due to the limited historical evidence, for model photography there emerges a larger historical trajectory from chiaroscuro photography to realism influenced by other media such as drawing and architectural photography. Spatial installations of models translate the achievements of realism in images back into a physically tangible experience of the model. Examining the model and its neighboring architectural media shows their influence on one another and how the Miniature Boom can be read as a medial shift towards three-dimensionality based on the model’s representational and imitative capacities.