fbpx 60 407 Photography | The Oslo School of Architecture and Design


60 407

Full course name in Norwegian Bokmål: 
Course code: 
60 407
Level of study: 
Teaching semester: 
2019 Spring
Assessment semester: 
2019 Spring
Language of instruction: 
Maximum number of students: 
Person in charge
Mattias F Josefsson
Marianne Skjulhaug
Required prerequisite knowledge

Admission to AHO and successful completion of three years bachelor level studies (180 ECTS). The course is for both master students in architecture and landscape architecture.

Course content


The objectives of the course move beyond learning how to take an excellent technical image. What do the different photographic approaches demonstrate and highlight? By the end of the course, students should be able to handle a camera, make professional prints, and have a broad understanding of photography as a medium. Most importantly, students should develop a critical approach to its use in architectural and landscape discourses.

Photography transposes the three-dimensional object onto a two-dimensional surface. How has the introduction of photography altered our understanding of the world, and foremost, the understanding of architecture? Students will be exposed to philosopher Vilém Flusser´s ideas and criticism of what he calls the apparatus (mechanical / industrial limitations). We will also discuss Roland Barthes idea of the viewer's interpretation (spectrum) of an image (punctum and studium). 

A perfectly manicured lawn with no signs of moss is divided from an overgrown forest ground by a white picket fence. This is how the Swedish photographer Lars Tunbjörk introduces the Scandinavian suburban garden in the photobook "Home" in 2003. Both the domesticated garden and the undomesticated outfields have the same birch trees and grass. The only difference is that on one side there is a man who cuts the grass.  

Our overall interest in this course is to look at the peri-urban landscapes around Oslo. What is in the realm where the city meets "nature". The students can look at this "in-between" space from a landscape (nature) or architecture (buildings) perspective. This area has for a long time interested many photographers and has a strong tradition in Scandinavia, such as in Tunbjörk's work. All of our tasks will be focusing on, and problematising this peri-urban area. An essential reference for this course is the book The New Topographics – Photographs of a Man-Altered Landscape.

It is highly suggested that students have their own semi-professional camera. 


Learning outcome

1)    After completing the course students will be able read and discuss critical canonical texts about photography and contextualise them within the field of architecture and landscape architecture.

2)    After completing the course the students will have the ability to discuss and use different styles or approaches to photography. 

3)   After completing the course the students will be able to demonstrate reflection on canonical texts, approaches and style of photohgrapy through heir own body of work, and present it in a professional manner. 

Working and learning activities

The course will consist of lectures, technical tutorials, readings and individual or collective field studies. Students are expected to present and discuss their photographs among peers and to contribute to the course’s collective environment. The elective week requires full participation. Final submission will be  a number of images that will be printed. 



The students will get a reading list on the first day of the course.

Form of assessmentGroupingGrading scaleComment
Portfolio assessment (Vurderingsmappe)IndividualPass / failThe assessment will be based on participation and presentation in the course, the individual photographs and the presentation in the final review.
Form of assessment:Portfolio assessment (Vurderingsmappe)
Grading scale:Pass / fail
Comment:The assessment will be based on participation and presentation in the course, the individual photographs and the presentation in the final review.
Workload activityComment
AttendanceThe weekly workshops and the elective week requires full participation.
Forventet arbeidsinnsats:
Workload activity:Attendance
Comment:The weekly workshops and the elective week requires full participation.