With awards season in full swing, Hollywood’s sparkly razamtaz occupies our television screens. But what about the unsung, architectural heros of film? What about the films that are less ‘Schindler’s List’ and more ‘Schindlers Hauser’, less ‘Wrath Of Kahn’ and more ‘Louis Kahn’. We look past the panoply of stars to bring you 30 of the best Architecture Documentaries which will provoke, intrigue and beguile in 2013.
Cinematographer Tomas Koolhaas, son of notorious Rem Koolhaas, has shared with us his latest clips from the feature length documentary film, REM. Set to debut in 2013, the motion picture breaks away from conventional approach to filming architecture and exposes the raw, human experience of Dutch architect’s most famous projects. As Tomas describes, REM gives the audience “a rare insight into the reality of the hidden internal life of the buildings”.
ArchDaily had the chance to discuss the film with Tomas. Continue after the break for the complete interview and another small preview of the film!
For the first time ever, Design Onscreen – the Initiative for Architecture and Design on Film – will present the Design Onscreen Film Festival at the Venice Architecture Biennale, August 27 through the 29th at the Arsenale’s Teatro Piccolo. All sixteen screenings are free and open to the public and most will be followed by dynamic in-person discussions and audience Q&As, featuring top architects and design experts from around the globe, including Lord Norman Foster, Peter Eisenman, Rick Joy, Steven Holl, Vittorio Garatti, Deyan Sudjic (Director, Design Museum London), Barry Bergdoll (Chief Curator of Architecture and Design at the Museum of Modern Art); Moshen Mostafavi (Dean, Harvard Graduate School of Design), Mark Wigley (Dean, Columbia Univ. School of Architecture), and David Chipperfield (Curator and Director of the 13th Annual International Architecture Exhibition, Venice Biennale).
Continue after the break for trailers and more information. (more…)
The relationship between social dynamics and architecture has always been intimate. It is a constant dialogue between social norms and politics, stylistic trends and aesthetic choices, individual preferences and the collective good. The Modernist Period was a time when architecture took on the challenge of many social problems. In all the arts – architecture, design, music and film – the period was highly politicized and the choices often gave way to a utilitarian ideal that was a hybrid of efficiency, simplicity and comfort. Jake Gorst’s new film Modern Tide: Midcentury Architecture on Long Island, supported by Design Onscreen, is a message of preservation that takes us through the history of the modernist housing boom that took place on Long Island, NY in the period between the Great Depression and the 1970s.
On August 14th, Cook+Fox Architects hosted a private film screening at their office on 641 Ave of the Americas, presenting the treasures along the island’s shore that have fallen between the cracks of history. The film looks at works from Albert Frey, Wallace Harrison, Frank Lloyd Wright, Marcel Breuer, Philip Johnson, Charles Gwathmey, Barbara and Julian Neski and many others.
Follow us after the break to catch up on the history of the development of these houses on Long Island. (more…)
Mehruss Jon Ahi and Armen Karaoghlanian combined their educational backgrounds with Interiors, an online journal that marries architecture and film.
Interiors is an online journal, published on the 15th of each month, in which films are analyzed and diagrammed in terms of space. Interiors focuses on how space is used throughout a particular scene and how the architecture of the film impacts its narratives and characters.
It has been confirmed by Studio Wim Wenders and Atelier Peter Zumthor & Partners that the news of Wim Wenders devoting his new 3D documentary film on architecture to Peter Zumthor was in fact a rumor. Although Wenders will be conducting an artistic interview film with Zumthor for the upcoming 2012 Venice Biennale, it has nothing to do with his feature documentary. The Biennale interview film and the 3D documentary on architecture are two separate projects that were mistakenly combined by the source article. We apologize for the confusion.
With that begin said, we look forward to both the Biennale film and the 3D documentary, as the internationally renowned director never seems to disappoint.
Photograph: Andrew Meredith
In ArchDaily we have mentioned films, whether because of its content closely related with Architecture, or because of the space, photography, atmosphere, or any other relevant feature to our practice that could mean a certain value through an Architect’s eyes.
From this week and on, we will propose a film for you to watch – enjoy – and comment if you want to share your thoughts about the movie with us. We have already a starting list which still open for your recommendations.
The first movie to introduce is a classic from the ’80, “The Belly of an Architect” by the British director Peter Greenaway.
More info after the break.
Imagine Jeanne Gang’s Starlight Theater. You are standing under the origami-shaped roof as it begins to open like petals on a flower. One moment you are sheltered by a heavy metal roof and the next you are staring up at the blue sky. Many expect architectural filmmakers have the goal of recreating architectural experiences such as these, however architectural filmmaker Red Mike disagrees. He believes film is not meant to compete with the actually experience of architecture, but rather “help communicate architecture for the betterment of architecture.”
In this panel discussion architecture critic Edward Lifson, architecture film critic Jonathan Rosenbaum, architecture filmmaker Red Mike and architecture critic Lee Bey discuss the different art forms of architecture, film and digital photography. Join the discussion and share your thoughts as they compare an architectural filmmaker to a “bird watcher”, an architectural photographer to a “hunter” and question whether architectural film and photography has physically changed the way we design.
Created by Reiser + Umemoto for the Hong Kong & Shenzhen Bi-City Biennale, “Manhattan Memorious” explores what Manhattan could have been. The film visualizes several unrealized projects from Manhattan, including Buckminster Fuller’s dome over Midtown, Rem Koolhaas’ City of the Captive Globe, RUR’s East River Corridor, Paul Rudolph’s Eastside Redevelopment Corridor, Morphosis’ West Side Yard and others.
Jesse Reiser, Principal of Reiser + Umemoto, explains; “Before a city becomes a thing of steel, concrete and glass it is a theater of visions in conflict. As a city ages, the visions do not die but come up against the physical and ideological resistance of the place and its people. The city we see today is the direct result of radical visions, gradually changing the way the future is realized. This is an account of a Manhattan that could have been – might have been. A phantasmagorical Manhattan where the visionary meets the everyday – the absurd and the sublime. The island as we know it is but a pale reflection of a city designed by visionaries – a city of mad, incongruous utopias.”
Architectural Dialogues is a film by Sasha Waltz shot in the unconventional setting of three museums and cultural centers: Neues Museum in Berlin designed by David Chipperfield Architects in collaboration with Julian Harrap, MAXXI National Museum of the XXI Century Arts in Rome designed by Zaha Hadid and the Jewish Museum in Berlin designed by Daniel Libeskind.
More on the film with trailers after the break! (more…)
Since Wim Wenders’s new documentary “Pina” hit the theaters this month, the online world hasn’t stopped talking about the German film director’s plan to create a 3D documentary film on architecture. In a recent interview with the Documentary Channel, Wenders revealed his plans stating, “I have actually already started a long-term project, another documentary in 3D. It will take several years, but it’s going to be about architecture. I have always wanted to do a film about architecture, and I have a lot of architect friends. But that is another subject I never really knew how to approach with film. I realized through PINA that architecture is something that could have a real affinity to this medium. We started shooting already, but it’s at the very, very beginning. That’s going to be my next documentary project in 3D, but I would definitely also do a narrative film in the future in 3D as well.”
Most of us have heard stories about the life of Frank Lloyd Wright, including the scandalous tale of his mistress Martha “Mamah” Cheney and the tragic murder that took place in their Wisconsin home. The legendary architect has also captured the attention of veteran filmmaker Bruce Beresford and producers J. Todd Harris and Ed Bachrach, as they have signed on to create a film about Frank Lloyd Wright entitled Taliesin.
Beresford told The Hollywood Reporter, “It’s a very good script. It doesn’t cover his whole life, just a small section of it, and it doesn’t whitewash him into some sort of saint.”
The BMW Guggenheim Lab recently dismantled its mobile laboratory in New York City, and after two exciting months it is vital to reflect on the conversations and ideas that were sparked by its discussions, lectures, workshops and screenings. This impromptu laboratory / forum / classroom, free and open to the public, was situated on the corner of Houston Street and 2nd Avenue in a sliver of a lot in First Park in the Lower East Side of Downtown Manhattan. Since August 3rd it has hosted charged discussions focused on architecture, urban studies, environmental concerns and community participation.
On October 5th, the lab hosted the screening of The End of Suburbia: Oil Depletion and the Collapse of The American Dream (2004), directed by Gregory Greene and produced by Barry Silverthorn. With brutal honesty it presents the threats of our current lifestyle, particularly the suburban lifestyle, and the displacement of the long established tradition of “American Dream” by way of its ecological ramifications.
Read on for more on the documentary! (more…)
Architecture has taken over the month of October (or, should we say Archtober) in New York as the city’s Architecture and Design Month provides scores of activities, programs and exhibitions throughout the month. The program, which runs out of The Center for Architecture, seeks to raise awareness about the important role of design in our daily lives, and to celebrate New York’s richness of such a built environment. This week on Archtober’s calendar of events, we are looking forward to the beginning of the Architecture & Design Film Festival at Tribeca Cinema (featuring 31 varied films!) and Architecture for Humanity’s Design Like You Give a Damn lecture later in the week. National Design week starts up on Sunday and there’s an interesting lecture about the history of urban waterfronts next Thursday. Plus, be sure to check out a walking tour of the September 11 and Irish Hunger Memorials on Sunday, the 30, and to round out the month, how about a Halloween parade at the Center for Architecture. In addition to the events, every day of the month has an associated “Building of the Day”. We spotted some ArchDaily favorites on the list that you may want to tour such as 41 Cooper Square (October 20); The Highline (October 22); New Amsterdam Pavilion (October 23); Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center (October 25); and The Standard Hotel (October 28).
So, if you are finding yourself with a craving for architecture – whether it be films, lectures, or built structures – be sure to take full advantage of the varied offerings of Archtober.