Architecture and Design Films Worth Seeing


Starting tomorrow, the 8th Annual Architecture and Design Film Festival will be screening 33 fascinating films from around the world.

By Sarah Emily Gilbert

The 8th Annual Architecture and Design Film Festival kicks off tomorrow, September 28 at Cinépolis Chelsea in NYC. Over the course of five days, 33 films from eight countries will screen at the festival along with a series of panel discussions, speakers, and director Q&As. Tickets are available online at Here, we outlined a few of the fascinating films screening this year.


“Talking House: Eileen Gray & Jean Badovici”

Director Elizabeth Lennard’s 40-minute montage of Villa E-1027, the iconic modernist villa built by Eileen Gray and Jean Badovici on the Cote d’Azur in 1929. The film combines Irish furniture designer and architect, Eileen Gray’s 1929 photos with film footage by French architect, Le Corbusier. The film is just as much about the villa as it is about Jean Badovici (a Romanian architect) and Gray’s tumultuous love affair and their complicated relationship with Corbusier.


This is Villa E-1027. According to sources, the name of the house is a code for Eileen Gray and Jean Badovici’s relationship with ‘E’ standing for Eileen, ’10’ Jean, ‘2’ Badovici, ‘7’ Gray.

“The Storyteller. After Walter Benjamin.”

Director Nathanial Knop explores the visual forms of storytelling in today’s society that philosopher, Walter Benjamin, predicated in his 1936 essay. The film features architects, an artist, and strangely, a walrus hunter, who all exchange experiences through visuals.

Storyteller Peter Eisenman Memorial

Storyteller Peter Eisenman Memorial

Pictured here is the 2005 Berlin Holocaust Memorial by architect Peter Eisenman. In keeping with Knop’s film, the structure says so much without saying anything at all.

Storyteller Nikolay Polissky Firebird

Storyteller Nikolay Polissky Firebird

Russian contemporary artist, Nikolay Polissky’s “Firebird,” an enormous two-headed eagle with a built-in stove that is in The Storyteller. After Walter Benjamin.

“The Novgorog Spaceship”

Director Andrei Rozen’s film explores Dostoevsky’s Drama Theatre, a building located on the Volkhov River in Russia that is pictured below. Called an “architecture freak,” by, the weathered and abandoned building stands in stark contrast to its surrounding area, one of the most important historic cities in Russia. Built during the end of Soviet rule, its modernist architecture represent far more than a building design.


Psychedelic Animation of The Novgorod Spaceship

“Where Architects Live”

As its name suggests, this film directed by Francesca Molteni, takes viewers into the homes of eight prominent designers. The film combines video footage from 30 films originally used in the Milan exhibit “Where Architects Live.” The series was used in the Milan Design Week 2014.


Pictured here is Italian architect and designer, Mario Bellini’s, home. (Photo by Davide Pizzigoni)


Mario Bellini in his home. (Photo by Davide Pizzigoni)

“Architects: A Story of Loss, Memory and Real Estate”

Director Tom Jennings’ film about the competition to rebuild the site of the

World Trade Center after 9/11.


Pictured here is Old Liberty Skyline, one of the unrealized World Trade Center memorials after 9/11 (Photo Credit: Kevin Kennon Architects)


Pictured here is 11 Old Battery Park, one of the unrealized World Trade Center memorials after 9/11 (Photo Credit: Kevin Kennon Architects)