Australian Documentary Streamer Shelter April 2023 Highlights



The Proposal

The Proposal, New Directions, Softness: Designing a City, and Mies Van Der Rohe: The Houses of Lange & Esters are some of April’s top picks o Shelter.

See the earliest steps into modernism in Bauhaus-Germany, follow an artist’s quest to democratise and share the work of a Pritzker Prize winning architect, learn about the “softness” movement that aims to sustainably revolutionise urban design, and more on SHELTER this April.


Known as “the artist among architects”, Pritzker Prize-winning Mexican architect Luis Barragán is among the world’s most celebrated architects of the 20th century. Upon his death in 1988, much of his work was locked away in a Swiss bunker, hidden from the world’s view, aggressively “protected” and kept from the public by its copyright holders.

In an attempt to resurrect Barragán’s life and art, boundary redefining artist Jill Magid creates a daring proposition that becomes a fascinating artwork in itself – a high-wire act of negotiation that explores how far an artist will go to democratise access to art.

By cultivating relationships with Barragán’s family, admirers, institutions, and the rights holders – including extensive correspondence with the director of the Barragan Foundation – Magid consequently constructs a thoughtful love story between the director, herself, and the architect.

THE PROPOSAL is a startling, provocative work that forces the viewer into reckoning with how an artist’s story is told; and who is permitted to do the telling.

THE PROPOSAL (83 mins) USA 2019 (Available 3 April)


During his numerous visits to Japan in the 1950s, renowned Australian architect Robin Boyd became fascinated with post-war Japanese architecture.Convinced he had seen the architecture of the future from architects such as Kenzo Tange, Boyd became determined to introduce and implement these learnings to the West, via his essays and books.

NEW DIRECTIONS charts the influence of Boyd’s discoveries; and how it would inspire a number of younger Australian architects through the 1960s and 70s to incorporate aspects of Japanese Modernism into their subsequent work.

NEW DIRECTIONS (38 mins) Australia 2016 (Available 10 April)


When designing a city, softness is rarely the first theme in people’s thoughts.

Yet for Italian company i-Mesh, a focus on soft architecture is a forward-thinking strategy to combat the future challenges of urban spaces in a post-pandemic world; and to redesign cities with a focus on quality of life and environmental protection.

SOFTNESS explores the unique i-Mesh material and technology, which is seeking to revolutionise architectural design with its lightness, transparency, resistance, flexibility, and sustainability.

Through the use of “soft” materials, designers are looking to respond to the continuous needs of transforming spaces using adaptive, temporary, transportable systems while contrasting the effects of urban heat.

Featuring discussions with architects, designers, and philosophers such as Kengo Kuma, Gabriele Mastrigli, Ico Migliore, Werner Sobek, Benedetta Tagliabue, Edoardo Tresoldi; who pose radical questions about the meaning of design and living today, this documentary investigates a new model and a new way of looking at the culture of design.

“Soft is a vision of the world, a light and circular gaze, impermanent, gentle, systemic.”

“Softness is an interweaving of stories and threads.”

SOFTNESS: DESIGNING A CITY (42 mins) Italy 2022 (Available 17 April)


In 1920s Germany textile industry magnate Hermann Lange commissioned avant-garde architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe to design two revolutionary residential villas on the outskirts of Krefeld.

Open buildings, with glass facades and floating spaces inside, these two villas marked a key point in the modernist architecture movement. However, not all of Mies van der Rohe’s cutting-edge ideas were accepted by the client, and compromises would have to be made.

Today, both of the houses are now world-renowned museums; where art meets architecture.

Through interviews with Lange’s great-granddaughter and the director of Art Museums in Krefeld, this short documentary unpacks these two houses that began the open concept style of living.

“These are the most important buildings between tradition and modernity that have been created in this period.”

HOUSES LANGE ESTERS BY MIES VAN DER ROHE (26 mins) Germany 2010 (Available 24 April)

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