October 23, 2018
by Canadian Architect
Celebrating women pioneers in architecture and urbanism, Joseph Hillel’s new film City Dreamers chronicles the accomplishments of four seminal urban figures. Along with American architect Denise Scott Brown, the documentary focuses on Canadians Phyllis Lambert, Blanche Lemco van Ginkel, and Cornelia Hahn Oberlander. Premiering as part of November’s Montreal International Documentary Festival, the film will be shown on November 10 and 15, with the director set to be joined by Phyllis Lambert for both screenings.
Hillel has crafted a beautiful film in the women’s own words, without third-person discourse. Filming them on location in their homes in Philadelphia, Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal, he has captured their insights and beliefs on cities, amplifying it with rare archival footage he and his architectural research team have dug up from archives in Canada, the U.S and Europe – including newly discovered footage from CIAM and Team X.
The official festival page for City Dreamers offers more information about the film:
They worked with Le Corbusier, Mies van der Rohe and many more. They have decades of experience, and they were pioneers in their field. As women, their careers have not been without obstacles. You may not have heard of the architects Phyllis Lambert, Blanche Lemco van Ginkel, Cornelia Hahn Oberlander and Denise Scott Brown, but City Dreamers will help you get to know them. Through interviews and archival footage, Joseph Hillel takes us inside the fascinating world of these extraordinary creators. The film is an invitation to rethink the city with women who have devoted their lives to improving our environment, and who continue to share their knowledge and warn us about the pitfalls of urban design.
Tickets for City Dreamers are now available via the Montreal International Documentary Festival website, linked here. The November 10 screening will feature English subtitles, with French language subtitles will be presented on November 15.