Emotional architecture in science-fiction films

Architecture, Artistic research, Graduation projects

For my bachelor thesis, I had the choice to present my research in any way I thought relevant. I picked the form of a short video, the kind which can be found on YouTube, to present it. It would therefore be spoken in English, the universal language of the internet, in order to reach out to as many people as possible.

As for my theme, it came naturally. Architecture has always been a part of my life, and I thought it was too bad people didn’t seem to realise how emotional it could be. In my opinion, architecture is a medium just as emotional as music, and should be used as such more often in films. So I showed examples of science-fiction films (one of my favourite genres) that did just that.

Romeo and Juliet Act 4 Scene 1

Artistic research, Graduation projects

The last project I did at the Netherlands Film Academy was this photograph. We had to make a picture inspired by a text (could be a song, a poem, a few lines from a novel or theatre piece, or even a newspaper clip). I chose a specific scene from Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare, in which Juliet, distraught after the exile of Romeo and her coming marriage to Paris, goes to Friar Laurence for help. She is ready to die, but he offers her hope in the form of a vial containing poison. The contrast of those strong emotions was what I wanted to show.

I took more inspiration in the Pre Raphaelites movement for the form. They had a way to show the emotions of the characters in their painting in a beautiful and tragic light, while rendering the textures and colors with immense precision, which I find mesmerising. The clothes and setting are obviously not historically accurate for the quattrocento (when Romeo and Juliet should take place). I did this the same way as the Pre Raphaelites, as they took loose inspiration from legends and stories, and put a story in a beautiful setting.

The beautiful set location in this case is the Apotheek Museum in Maaseik, which I highly recommend visiting. The actress playing Juliet is Louise Verdoot, a long-standing friend of mine, who’s also a talented graphic artist. And Friar Laurence was played by René Martin-Prevel. It was presented during the Keep An Eye Film Academy Festival 2019 in Amsterdam.


JULIET
Tell me not, friar, that thou hear’st of this,
Unless thou tell me how I may prevent it:
If, in thy wisdom, thou canst give no help,
Do thou but call my resolution wise,
And with this knife I’ll help it presently.
God join’d my heart and Romeo’s, thou our hands;
And ere this hand, by thee to Romeo seal’d,
Shall be the label to another deed,
Or my true heart with treacherous revolt
Turn to another, this shall slay them both:
Therefore, out of thy long-experienced time,
Give me some present counsel, or, behold,
‘Twixt my extremes and me this bloody knife
Shall play the umpire, arbitrating that
Which the commission of thy years and art
Could to no issue of true honour bring.
Be not so long to speak; I long to die,
If what thou speak’st speak not of remedy.

FRIAR LAURENCE
Hold, daughter: I do spy a kind of hope,
Which craves as desperate an execution.
As that is desperate which we would prevent.
If, rather than to marry County Paris,
Thou hast the strength of will to slay thyself,
Then is it likely thou wilt undertake
A thing like death to chide away this shame,
That copest with death himself to scape from it:
And, if thou darest, I’ll give thee remedy.

Van Binnenuit

Portfolio, Short films

In my third year at the Film Academy, I was the Production Designer for one film: “Van Binnenuit” (meaning From the Inside Out). It was an interesting experiment, as we tried to visualise angst as a concept. The result was not completely satisfactory but it allowed me to better get acquainted with the cameraman who would shoot my graduation film, David Koster. As this film is the propriety of the Netherlands Film Academy, I can only show these stills.

Rouwclown

Portfolio, Short films

In my second year at the Film Academy, I made a tragic-comedy called “Rouwclown”. It was inspired by a suprising existing fenomenon: clowns coming to funerals. I was, with my co-student Henk Pol, the Production Designer for this film. We looked together for the perfect location and all the props and clothings. The director and cameraman were the same ones with whom I made my third year film.

Moving looping styleframe

Artistic research, Portfolio

This was an exercise I made with Anouk Regensburg (studying vfx in my year). We had to make a loop and imagine a world that excited us. The background (stars) and the frame were made by hand by me and she made the animation and added the jellyfishes and the lighting.

The Arc

Portfolio, Short films

During my first year at the Film Academy (2015-2016), I made a science-fiction film with the same director (Max Everett) that would direct my graduation film. We had no budget whatsoever, just the props and clothes we could find at school and the talent of our vfx artists. Still, we managed to make a spaceship.

Antithèse

Architecture, Artistic research, Portfolio

The first film I ever made. Based on the film “Wings of Desire” of Wim Wenders, we had to take a single concept evoked in the film and make a short film about it. We chose the concept of antithesis, the opposing forces that play out throughout the film (humans and angels, mortals and immortals, black and white and colors, good and evil, …). This was also part of my architecture course at La Cambre – Horta.