Drawing on the visual narrative techniques of Japanese graphic novels and traditional Chinese landscape painting, students in the Syracuse University School of Architecture developed A Little Bit of Syracuse, an artistic tableau of the city.

Consisting of an eighty-foot scroll drawing and eighty hand-made models of local buildings, the exhibition is a narrative study of the often-overlooked structures that form the backdrop of everyday life in Syracuse. Under the direction of visiting studio professors Li Han and Hu Yan, principals of acclaimed Beijing-based Drawing Architecture Studio, ten students explored the city, each selecting eight normal, unremarkable buildings—coffee shops, laundromats, residences, etc.—to use as architectural elements in their visual narrative of the city.

Those familiar with Syracuse will immediately recognize many, if not all, the building models—the Dunkin Donuts drive-through, CNY Jazz Central, the Byrne Dairy Deli and Convenience Store.

These and other familiar structures can also be identified in the Syracuse cityscape depicted in the eighty-foot scroll drawing, which stitches together each building into a visual story that is at once both realistic and abstract, familiar and unfamiliar.

This is a project in conjunction with Syracuse University School of Architecture.