Applying their keen eyes to architecture’s everyday use, filmmakers Ila Bêka and Louise Lemoine create intimate portraits of iconic contemporary buildings, giving backstage access to their inner lives and hidden workings. This was recently epitomized by their celebrated documentary, Koolhaas HouseLife , which received its UK Premiere as the opening film of the London Architecture Foundation’s Architecture on Film series of screenings and was part of the exhibition “On Mock-ups, Home Videos and Housekeeping: a video exhibition in three parts” on display at Storefront’s gallery.

In a new transatlantic exhibition of Bêka and Lemoine’s ongoing research into architecture as living form, parallel video installations were presented at London’s Architecture Foundation and at Storefront’s gallery at 97 Kenmare Street in New York. The films depict the human occupations of Richard Meier’s Church in Rome, Frank Gehry’s Guggenheim Bilbao , and Herzog and de Meuron’s Pomerol winery, alongside further footage of Rem Koolhaas’s Maison a Bordeaux.

Seen through the lens of Bêka and Lemoine’s camera, architecture appears engaged in constant dialogue with its users, from line-dancing grape-pickers to abseiling window cleaners. Architecture is seen as an experience, in other words, rather than as an image. 


Exhibition films:
– Koolhaas HouseLife (2008) 21’00”
– Pomerol, Herzog & de Meuron (2010) 25’23”
– Xmas Meier (2010) 22’02”
– Gehry’s Vertigo (2010) 22’56”