Architectural Ethnography

Life obviously exceeds architecture, yet at the same time it is the basis and essence of architecture. Understanding its different forms, as ethnography shows, is the precondition of engaging with it. But, what does this mean for architecture? How can the myriad situations that both feed into and result from the design of a building be effectively mapped? How does one address architectural drawings, not just as simple notational systems but as instruments to document, discuss, and evaluate architecture? How can they work to explore people’s actual usages, needs, and aspirations, and moreover to give shape to individualized life forms in today’s globalized society?