This article presents the experience and pedagogical approach of a hands-on theoretical and practical workshop on representations, and how the former have transformed after two semesters of distance learning (spring 2020&2021). The hypothesis is that the power of making and the sentimental approach are also transmitted in the virtual environment of distance learning and that, thanks to them, creative pedagogical approaches and affective knowledge can be produced. The course “Special topics on representations”, offered at the School of Architecture, University of Thessaly (Greece), has served as case study. In the context of this course, a creative environment emerges through art and the practices of drawing and writing; a safe place to experiment, a place which enhances the feeling of community and sharing, where knowledge is made possible through emotion and the power of making. The main objective of this course is to present some contemporary approaches and definitions in the field of representations. Variety, different approaches and easy access to queries form a hands-on learning environment where information, new stimuli, concepts and methods are tested and interpreted by participants through their own experience of drawing and writing. The personal involvement through making, their shift from ordinary spectators to emancipated participants, as they produce and interpret their own images, the ability to understand their work and that of others are, surprisingly, reinforced through distance learning as everyone is working from home and at the same time is able to participate in the collective community online. Action and experimental mood through the internet are transferable and “contagious” mainly as, to a large extent, they are simultaneous, equal and always open to the surprises and observations that arise from the experiments. In common experience, movements, gestures, even through cameras, and sound are transferred and manage, even in an online setting, to put the participants’ minds at ease, favoring an environment where their anxieties, trials, “failures”, “errors”, and especially their impressions and admiration for the power of art, can be shared and shine.
Anthi Kosma holds a PhD (2014 Cum Laude & special honour) and DEA (2008) in architecture from the School of Architecture of Madrid (ETSAM) with scholarships from IKY and Triandafyllidis foundation respectively. She is currently giving classes at the Department of Architecture in University of Thessaly, (Volos) and working with xza.architects. She worked with “N+10” architects -1rst prize at the competition for 100 social houses in Madrid- (2011-12 and 2016-now) and realised many architectural projects by herself. Her main research interest is in non-representative drawing as a radical imaginary technique, a configurational ‘therapy’ with the capacity to experiment with oneself, a mute language in general and an exploratory action in the field of architecture specifically. She has organized several workshops, named “Imprográfika”, on experimental drawing (digital and analogic) and graphic improvisations, in Spain and abroad.