Film Fest Puts Design Within Reach

By Patty Wetli | Tuesday, April 10, 2012

"Unfinished Spaces" is featured in the Architecture and Design Film Festival. Credit: Courtesy of ADFF

A cardboard farm. An abandoned swimming pool turned into a concert venue. The return of Detroit to its “natural” agrarian state. Or not.

Sometimes, even in this city of Frank Lloyd Wright and Mies van der Rohe, it’s easy to forget that architecture and design are about more than just the next condo development or office tower. They’re about the creative use of space and the potential to elevate buildings into art. The Architecture and Design Film Festival (ADFF), April 12-16 at the Music Box Theatre, is here to remind us of the way architects and designers can alter and shape the way we view and interact with the built environment.

ADFF features more than 30 films from 13 countries–ranging from full-length documentaries to shorts–all of which examine in some manner or other the process by which architects and designers think, work and create. The festival also includes book signings and discussions with several of the filmmakers.

The lineup includes:

  • Detroit Wild City – A look at what the future might hold for the Motor City and whether urban agriculture is a viable proposition
  • American Homes – A short, animated history of residential architecture, and a discussion of what qualifies as a “house”
  • Unfinished Spaces – In 1961, three young architects are commissioned by Fidel Castro to create Cuba’s National Arts Schools. Forty years later, they return from exile to finish their work.

Tickets cost $11 per “program,” which typically includes more than one film, and can be purchased online or at the Music Box box office, 3733 N. Southport Ave.

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