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House as Autobiography: An Architectural Mis(Translation) of My Kitchen

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posted on 12.09.2021, 22:27 by Rea, Emma

This research unravels and reconstructs the all-enveloping, surreal-slowness of my kitchen during Level-4 lockdown; through the intimate familiarity of the line, and the tactility of paper. In a time and place defined by the assimilation of our public and private lives, physical boundaries that ordinarily served to separate and structure, were dissolved. Within this physically smaller world, the kitchen felt relatively larger.

Architecture and the kitchen (and equally, food and cooking) have long since existed within one another, both physically (in space) and etymologically. Isodore de Seville postulated that architecture first emerged in the dining hall, where the first building was made for eating. Equally, cooking and eating rely on a more-or-less solid and spatial framework.

Within the “pseudo-fastness” of the architectural industry, drawing is a comparatively slow and contemplative practice, cultivating an attention to detail, and embodying the capacity to enhance social and historic values. Equally, the generative capacity of drawing makes it uniquely capable of creating something new, from something else.

Just as lockdown was a recluse from the pace of everyday life, drawing is a recluse from the pace of normative architectural practice. The outcome of the research is a series of autobiographic houses, equally symptoms of the introspective experience of lockdown, and the introspective practice of drawing.

By exploiting the subtle parallels that transcend architectural practice, language, and the kitchen (and cooking); this research makes a sensitive proposition for a design practice deeply implicated by the composition of temporal and spatial conditions from which it is conceived.


Advisor 1

Wood, Peter

Copyright Date


Date of Award



Victoria University of Wellington - Te Herenga Waka

Rights License

Author Retains Copyright

Degree Discipline


Degree Grantor

Victoria University of Wellington - Te Herenga Waka

Degree Level


Degree Name

Master of Architecture (Professional)

ANZSRC Type Of Activity code


Victoria University of Wellington Item Type

Awarded Research Masters Thesis



Victoria University of Wellington School

Wellington School of Architecture