Register October 23, 2018 | Submit November 1, 2018 | Free Student Architecture Competition



Drawing of the Year 2018



Aarhus School of Architecture proudly announces the sixth joint venture competition: Drawing of the Year 2018. We invite architecture students from all over the world and call for drawings that demonstrate their ability to dream and create drawings that inspire for change.

Shaping new realities

This year’s bold theme is Shaping New Realities. Around the world, leaders, politicians, scientists, NGOs and architects discuss the overwhelming amount of challenges that need answers. Depending on your political orientation, climate, war, migration, unequal distribution of resources and power are among the biggest issues. The origins of these challenges are highly contested, making it difficult even to agree on what problems we need to solve and who should solve them. To this we can add lack of transparency on how the world is ruled and the power of algorithms and fake information. The more numbers and figures the more we are left indifferent and immune.  
We need to invent a new story. A story – economic, social, political, artistic, and architectural – that makes us believe, act and shape changes.
Technology is a protagonist in this story. Apps outnumber large traditional corporations. It is possible to share homes and cars with strangers; social media gathers groups of interest across the globe and fosters friendships, innovation, revolutions and conflicts simultaneously. Driverless cars are old news, renewable energy is developing rapidly, 3D printing is beginning to compete with mass production, and AI is entering our lives, buildings and cities. 
What is the role of architecture in this story? 
The rapid changes and the huge challenges question our ethical positions and force us to rethink society. For the architect’s part, this means engagement, critical involvement, and shaping images and solutions that take into consideration spatial consequences and possibilities. It means rethinking our physical world, adapting to the new realities, and pushing the boundaries of architecture.
The drawing is one of the architect’s oldest and most important tools. The drawing process leads to new thinking and to the development of ideas for the one who draws. Furthermore, it is a medium that disseminates thoughts and ideas to colleagues, clients, and a broader audience. The drawing can communicate, seduce and convince. And initiate a dialogue. 
The aim of the competition is to continuously explore new tendencies in architecture through architectural drawing and to challenge the use of new techniques and mixed media. We, therefore, invite bold, inspiring, and provocative proposals for Shaping New Realities. On all scales and in all environments – from the smallest structure to complex facilities; from rural outskirts to suburban environments; from nature to expanding megacities. From Earth to Mars.



Announcement 3 September 2018.
Questions 1st Q&A:
Deadline: 24 September 2018
Answers: 28 September 2018
2nd Q&A:
Deadline: 23 October 2018
Answers: 26 October 2018.
Submission deadline
1 November 2018 at 12.00 noon (CET).
Announcement of winners 30 November 2018.
.Exhibition at DOKK1 .30 November – 18 December 2018.

It is important that we receive your drawing no later than 1 November 2018 at 12.00 noon (CET). Entries received after the deadline will not be considered for the competition.



  • 1st prize: 5000 Euro
  • 2nd prize: 2000 Euro
  • 3rd prize: 1000 Euro








Peter Cachola Schmal

Peter Cachola Schmal has been the director of the Deutsches Architekturmuseum (DAM) in Frankfurt am Main since 2006.  He has been responsible for many exhibitions and projects. In 2016 he curated the German contribution to the Biennale Architettura in Venice.

About drawing as a creative tool, Peter Schmal says:

“The sketch, that comes from the Italian word schizzo (lightly thrown out), is meant to describe the wonderful emergence of an act of spontaneous creativity that lies at the foundation of all works of art. And it does not describe the arduous work, nor the thousands of hours of practice that may be needed to let the hand do what it needs to do without the mind interfering. For it is the free flow that comes out of the hand. Artificial Intelligence has not managed to recreate the human creativity, yet. But who knows, the artificial hand may just as well come up with its own doodles one day?”

Thomas Bossel

Thomas Bossel has been working at schmidt hammer lassen architects since his graduation from Aarhus School of  Architecture in 2011. He was recently promoted as Senior Associate and nominated as Next generation Design Leader. Besides working in the concept development department at Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects he also works as an artist.

Throughout his life art and architecture has played a big role. Drawing was a big force from his very childhood, which became his passion that undoubtedly has brought him into the world of architecture.

“With very little effort, the blank paper is given a purpose. A vast space full of potential. A fleeting thought suddenly has a space to grow, by yourself or with others. The paper and pen always listen to your mind. Drawing; a space to reflect,” explains Thomas Bossel.

Torben Nielsen

Archicets MAA Torben Nielsen has taught and researched at Aarhus School of Architecture since 1994 and has been rector at the school since 2010.

By establishing modern workshop facilities, he has emphasised students’ hands-on skills and their ability to test their idears in scale 1.1. He has also strengthened the school’s international orientation through recruitment and cooperation with schools of architecture and universities located in such diverse locations as China, Mexico and Australia.

As an architect, Torben Nielsen has mainly worked with the relationship between architecture and light – and his work on this theme has been exhibited several times.









For more information about this competition, please contact us.