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Updated: Aug 18, 2020

We have spent the summer reflecting on the Black Lives Matter movement and the issues which it has brought to the fore. We have found several groups which give a platform to under-represented voices in architecture.

This is in no way an exhaustive list and we would like to find more Scottish based groups. If you have suggestions to add to our list then please email:

Narrative Practice

Narrative Practice is a london-based architectural design, research and teaching platform centred around embedding culture and story into space. It is led by Dhruv Gulabchande

Afterparti Zine

Afterparti create and champion platfroms for under-represented voices in architecture and design. Issue 00, entitled ‘The Time for Failure is Now’ was published in 2019. The theme for 2020 is ‘For the Love of Power’ and began with an on-stage conversation at the Barbican.

Muslim Women in Architecture

A platform that celebrates Muslim Women in Architecture and the Built Environment.

Sound Advice

Sound Advice is a platform exploring spatial inequality. Mixing social commentary and music and founded by urbanists Pooja Agrawal and Joseph Henry.

Black Females in Architecture

Black Females in Architecture is a network and enterprise founded to increase the visibility of black and black-mixed heritage females within architecture and other built environment fields.


LionHeart is a TEDx Speaker, BBC Radio London Presenter, Award winning Poet and International spoken word performer. His debut poetry collection ‘The Mute’s Rebellion’ excavates memories of social anxiety, selective mutism, upbringing, emotional vulnerability and more. LionHeart was the first poet in residence at Grimshaw Architects, Squires and Partners and The Building Centre.

Migrant’s Bureau

Migrants Bureau curate, research and facilitate design interventions in response to the influence that culture, geography and social circumstances can have on people’s experiences of the city and its architecture.

In 2020, Migrants Bureau hosted a supper club, bringing together collectives from across the cultural, architectural and design fields with ‘Pecha Kucha’ style presentations by a selection of inspirational speakers.

Resolve Collective

An Interdisciplinary Design Collective using architeture, art and technology to address social issues in the built environment.

Depatriarchise Design

A non-profit design research platform that examines the complicity of design in the reproduction of opressive systems.

New Architecture Writers

A free programme for emerging design writers. N.A.W. focuses on black and minority ethnic emerging writers who are under-represented across design journalism and curation. A series of evening workshops, talks and writing briefs form the core of N.A.W’s programme with one-to-one mentoring from experienced design critics and editors throughout.

Built By Us

Built By Us is a not-for-profit consultancy based in London that specialises in the construction sector. BBU has a vision that by 2030 it will have played an active role in the creation of a diverse UK construction sector which both reflects the society it serves and draws on the talents of a diverse workforce.

Updated: Aug 18, 2020

As curators and as practising architects we have always had an affinity towards analog drawing. Often, the pressure of work and life directs us towards more digital processes and leaves little space for drawing in our downtime. This lockdown period has opened that space again and we find ourselves drawing again. The will to maintain this process has always been foremost to maintain the skill of observation, representation and eye – to mind -to hand coordination. However drawing and the associated act of mindfulness have also proven to be an important part of coping with the realities of a global pandemic and all the complexities that follow it. Anxiety seems to fade away whilst drawing.

As aspiring student architects we always enjoyed the mindful elements of preparing a drawing. We preferred either to work with hardline hand drawings or carefully in CAD in a process that mimicked a drawing board. For example, manually hatching on paper, repetitive drawing in CAD or repeated slicing of card may seem laborious and banal, however these tasks have always been a method for our minds to wander away from the issue of the day and venture into the potential opportunities. Quite often when drawing in this way we would have a piece of sketch paper close at hand in order to draft ideas which were beginning to form.

Our awareness of the act of drawing and its relationship to both our design process and mental health has always been present. We relate it to the hours of repetitive practice an athlete might undertake in training, a musician’s routine of repeating scales and pieces or a joiner’s process of carefully working wood. These are the processes of a grafter who must not only conquer a skill or physical process but also be tested by a wandering mind. It requires both a fluidity of thought and focus.

In these strange times the benefits of this graft seem very present for our mental well-being but also as a necessary and useful practice which we must hold on to when the world begins to wake up again. Just as architects fight for a space of particular importance in a design; we must also fight for the space in our lives and our process to draw in reverie. It is essential for our design skills but also beneficial to our well being as creatures of ink and paper.

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