“Architecture must be world craft, the art of making our world,” says famous Danish architect Bjarke Ingels as he explains the elegance of his craft. In the world of construction, creativity, and hard labor collide to create the structures that make up its occupants’ place of residence, employment, or sometimes both. In the industry, there is more to their work drawing plans and managing a project’s progress than meets the eye.
Listed below are the best shows and movies that give its viewers insight into the experiences of these professionals and their projects. Delve into the creative minds of the world’s infrastructure artists and find out what makes them tick.
Abstract: The Art of Design
Abstract: The Art of Design dives into the lives and creative processes of numerous design-based professions. They tell the story of how they perceive design and the way it influences our lives, our way of thinking, and perhaps even our feelings. Bjarke Ingels steps in at Episode Four to put a spotlight on his innovative designs, as well as the challenges he faces as an architect.
The Emmy-nominated series is available for viewing on Netflix.
The Infinite Happiness
Once again related to the Danish architect, The Infinite Happiness is a documentary that takes place in the 8 Tallet (8 House) of Copenhagen. For 21 days, the movie follows the lives of the residents of the famous structure as they talk about their experiences while living there. But not all is fine and dandy, as some residents have expressed concern over the 8 Tallet being a tourist attraction.
The development of the residential building itself has garnered numerous awards and honors for its innovative and sustainable structural design.
The film is available for viewing on Vimeo.
Megastructures give viewers a look at the world’s megastructures, each rivaling other structures in size, power, design, or innovation. The series covers projects around the world and can be a learning experience for those in engineering and architectural studies.
Select episodes of the series are available for viewing online.
Modern Marvels is one of History Channel’s first and longest-running programs to date, wowing viewers for a full decade. The show features topics besides construction and architecture and includes insights on subjects like agriculture, transportation, and technology.
The show’s nine seasons are available for viewing on Amazon, with some episodes unavailable for purchase.
Unlike Megastructures, Extreme Engineering sheds light on the engineering of ambitious projects. Included in the show are projects that are:
- Still on the proposal stage
- Currently under construction
- Have reached completion
- Are cancelled or shelved until further notice
The show’s three seasons are available to watch on Discovery Go.
Listed below are other, more obscure movies and documentaries that we highly recommend for your viewing pleasure.
- My Architect – A documentary following the people and the works connected to famed American architect, Louis Khan.
- Precise Poetry/Lina Bo Bardi’s Architecture – A documentary that is difficult to find online. It celebrates the achievements and influence of the prolific Brazilian architect Lina Bo Bardi.
- Five Master Houses of the World – A collection of five documentaries detailing the beauty of five homes that were designed by five leading architects.
- The Belly of an Architect – This fictional drama film that features the works of 18th century French architect, Étienne-Louis Boullée, and his influence on the protagonist’s descent into madness.
The way these shows highlight the beauty of construction work sheds light on the industry and its various projects. And while one can joke about how an architect’s designs can make an engineer weep, you cannot deny that the fruits of their labor are quite a sight to behold.