M.Arch. Student Receives Architectural Drawing Prize

black and white detailed drawing of metaphorical spaces above and below a border wall
American Dream for American Nightmare captures a regional vision of the border wall between the U.S. and Mexico. drawing / Yue (Maria) Ma (M.Arch. '18)
black and white detailed drawing of good and evil characters on either side of a wall
Maria Yue Ma's contest entry was originally created for Fly on the Wall: Reimagining Cross-Border Territories Through Design Thinking, a spring 2018 option studio. drawing / Yue (Maria) Ma (M.Arch. '18)
American Dream for American Nightmare captures a regional vision of the border wall between the U.S. and Mexico. drawing / Yue (Maria) Ma (M.Arch. '18) Maria Yue Ma's contest entry was originally created for Fly on the Wall: Reimagining Cross-Border Territories Through Design Thinking, a spring 2018 option studio. drawing / Yue (Maria) Ma (M.Arch. '18)
News
October 25, 2018

Work by Yue (Maria) Ma (M.Arch. '18) was selected from entries from 31 countries for a Highly Commended prize in the 2018 Architecture Drawing Prize competition. Now in its second year, the prize celebrates the art and skill of architectural drawing and is curated by Make Architects, Sir John Soane’s Museum, and the World Architecture Festival.

The competition judges entries based on technical skill; success in conveying a design idea, be it a general concept or a specific proposal; originality of approach; quality of drawing irrespective of the project it may represent (built, unbuilt, or purely conceptual); and the extent to which the drawing makes a proposition about architecture, rather than simply recording it.

Ma's entry, titled American Dream for American Nightmare, was originally created for Fly on the Wall: Reimagining Cross-Border Territories Through Design Thinking, a spring 2018 option studio taught by visiting critics Derek Dellekamp, Rozana Montiel, and Erin Pellegrino. The class traveled to San Diego and Tijuana, Mexico — the busiest land border crossing in the world — to observe impartially the barriers in border landscapes and territories, like "a fly on the wall." According to Ma, "American Dream for American Nightmare is a regional vision of the border between the U.S. and Mexico, and, in a broader context, refers to segregation and discrimination in our society. The references in the drawing were drawn from hundreds of years of our history and culture, and people from different backgrounds a different view of the drawing." The project incorporates traditional hand drawing and contemporary digital tools including Rhino 3D modeling and Adobe Illustrator.

This year's competition judges included Nikki Bell and Ben Langlands, artists at Langlands and Bell; Owen Hopkins, senior curator of exhibitions and education at Sir John Soane's Museum; Nicola Kalinsky, director of the Barber Institute of Fine Arts; Jeremy Melvin, curator of the World Architecture Festival; Farshid Moussavi, founder of Farshid Moussavi Architecture, Ken Shuttleworth, founder of Make Architects; and Narinder Sagoo, senior partner at Foster and Partners.

The winning projects are on display at the Sir John Soane's Museum in London from October 17–November 18 and will also be displayed at the World Architecture Festival in Amsterdam in late November.

Ma's work along with several other projects from Fly on the Wall will also be on display at Yale University as part of an exhibition titled Two Sides of the Border. The exhibition highlights work from a project launched by Tatiana Bilbao that aims to examine, research, and introduce architectural issues related to the United States and Mexico. Bilbao collaborated with 13 studio classes from universities in Mexico and the U.S. and also commissioned photographer Iwan Baan to travel to each of the studio sites to capture the changing landscapes and architecture’s role in culture. The exhibition will be open from November 29–February 9.

By Rebecca Bowes