Architecture under the lens

Wednesday 05 Oct 2011

Architecture Film Festival Rotterdam considers religious architecture, the African metropolis and pessimism in the industry

From the 6th to the 9th October, Rotterdam will be overrun by architecture film enthusiasts as the city plays host to the annual Architecture Film Festival Rotterdam (AFFR). The LantarenVester cinema in Rotterdam will be the main attraction at the four day event, showing shorts and feature-length films, documentaries, hosting debates, talk shows and excursions. Smaller venues around the city will also engage in the festivities.

On Saturday afternoon five new films will be premiered to the festival attendees, including: Perspectieven, a portrait of Dutch architect Wiel Arets; Mission Statements, a documentary about Dutch embassy buildings; John Portman, a Life of Building, a study of the world-famous architect; and Space, a documentary about the American Ant Farm avant-garde individuals who are a source of inspiration for the contemporary architecture world.

There are a number of themes running through this year’s AFFR. Think Big, Act Small recognises the current pessimism in the industry and seeks out positive compositions to counteract this, with more than a handful of low budget initiatives expressing the underlying vigour of the architecture community.

Smaller themes include Religious Buildings and Africa. Sunday’s session will focus fittingly on the subject of religious architecture and the role of the church in an urban realm through a series of debates, a bike tour past places of worship in Amsterdam and the screening of two related films: The Madman and the Cathedral, and Grote Genade. Africa also plays a central role in the AFFR, with various shorts and documentaries exploring the social and political intricacies affecting the architecture of the African metropolis. Films such as Grande Hotel, Garbage Dreams and Ekümenopolis will be shown under this examination. Three short teasers below demonstrate the level of filmatic material on display during the AFFR.

Medianeras from jour2fete on Vimeo.

Trailer: Robin Hood Gardens (Or Every Brutalist Structure For Itself) from Roger Low on Vimeo.

Garbage Dreams, The Theatrical Movie Trailer from The Medium Control on Vimeo.

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