Call for Papers: Autodidacts, Workshops, Academies – Architectural Education 1400 -185o, Sixth Colloquium on Architectural Theory at the Werner Oechslin Library, Werner Oechslin Library, Einsiedeln, April 20 – 23, 2017
Deadline: 5 October 2016
Before the establishment of the major schools of architecture in the
nineteenth century, there were various ways to become an architect,
each with different focuses. A canonical system did not exist. Studies
based on books or travel, apprenticeships in workshops and studios, a
training in the military or building administration, as well as
academic lessons could all be part of the education of a prospective
architect. A talent for drawing was always a prerequisite, as were the
economic possibilities of the surroundings. Aspiring to a secure
position in the military or administration motivated the young
candidates, and family connections and knowledge fostered their
development. Furthermore, beginning in the 17th century, textbooks were
published specifically for the needs of the students. This gradually
led to the consolidation of formats and didactic conditions for
training architects, including (teaching) collections that made
available illustrative material – similar to the artists’ training for
sculptors or painters.
Research to date has focused primarily on architectural training in the
art academies, yet beyond this, no overview considers the other
relevant domains. At this upcoming event, the numerous paths to
knowledge and the varied acquisition of competencies will be presented
and compared in individual studies and analyses. Relying closely on
historical sources, the contributions will enable us to form a general
outline of the topic.
The event addresses architectural theoreticians, architects, art
historians, historians of technology and science, and others, and seeks
to bring together leading experts on the topics as well as, in
particular, young researchers from various countries.
Papers should be limited to twenty-minute presentations.
Languages for paper proposals and presentations: German, English,
French, Italian. At least a passive knowledge of German is expected of
The Foundation assumes the hotel costs for course participants, as well
as for some group meals. Travel costs cannot be reimbursed.
How to Submit: Please send short paper proposals and CVs by e-mail to: