Bêka & Lemoine: The Emotion of the Space

 John Hill
5. June 2018
"Moriyama-San," a film by Ila Bêka & Louise Lemoine (Photo: Screenshot)
A new film from the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art's Louisiana Channel probes filmmaker Ila Bêka about the documentaries of Bêka & Lemoine, which have carved a notable niche in the realm of architecture films by focusing on the people who use buildings rather than on those who design them.
The half-hour interview starts with the duo's breakthrough Koolhaas Houselife​ from 2006 and then moves on to a documentary about BIG's 8 House in Copenhagen. Most of the time is devoted to the filmmakers' latest film, Moriyama-San, about the eponymous resident (what the filmmakers call an "urban hermit" on their website) of Ryue Nishizawa's Moriyama House in Tokyo. As Bêka talks, we watch Moriyama move about the house, reading in a window, on a stair ... each time in a different place depending on the part of the book he was reading. It's a perfect example of how Bêka and Lemoine train their camera on people to learn more about buildings than architects could ever tell them.

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