Visible Cities

An evening examining the rich overlap between the architecture of graphic novels and architecture itself


07:00pm, Monday, 13 May 2019


09:00pm, Monday, 13 May 2019


£7 Students
£7 AF Members

This is a past event

Architecture exists in the imagination. The concrete reality of a city, street or building is far too complex for the mind to fully grasp. Instead, our experience of architecture comprises a web of mental images of the urban realm, some rooted in reality – many extrapolated, filtered and concocted.

Both architects and graphic novelists tell stories about cities; real and imagined. They are in this sense both urban practitioners, creating neighbourhoods to serve communities and articulating the values of societies through the built forms of their streets. The urban graphic novel is both an analysis and depiction of architecture and its impact on people.

As a new generation of graphic novelists explore political and spatial ideas through imagined cities, this evening event examines the rich overlap between the architecture of graphic novels and architecture itself. Five artists whose work straddles city making and city imagining will present drawings and stories from their archives and discuss the mutual resonance between graphic novels and architecture.

Copies of the speakers' work will be available to buy and get signed after the event.


Benoît Peeters

Benoît is a French comics writer, novelist, and scholar of comics studies. He is particularly known for Les Cités obscures, an imaginary world which mingles a Borgesian metaphysical surrealism with the detailed architectural vistas of the series' artist, François Schuiten. The series began with Les Murailles de Samaris (The Walls of Samaris) in 1983 and is still continuing.

Nigel Peake

Nigel draws. He is an artist whose, often richly-coloured, work explores the patterns of human settlement from facades to bridges and from agricultural landscapes to skylines. He grew up in Ballytrustan (County Down) and originally studied architecture in Edinburgh for six years before moving to Switzerland for a period to teach an architectural studio. 


Luke Jones and Anna Mill

Luke is the co-creator of the About Buildings and Cities podcast and is a Senior Lecturer at the CASS while Anna Mill is an illustrator and designer. Together they co-founded the design agency, Mill & Jones and created the graphic novel Square Eyes. The book is about robotic cities, augmented reality and digital memory, set in a future where the boundaries between memory, dreams and the virtual world blur.

Antonis Papamichael (chair)

Antonis is a comic book artist and video game artist. He is graduate of the Architectural Association and previously practised architecture at David Chipperfield Architects. His work under the name Perpetual Output mixes spatial drama, narrative and sometimes dark humour.