Length: 92 min.
Language: English. Also available in French as "Architecture autochtone architecture vivante."
Director: Paul M. Rickard
Producers: Paul M. Rickard, George Hargrave and Tamara Lynch
Co-produced: The National Film Board of Canada and Mushkeg Productions Inc in association with APTN
Writers: Paul M. Rickard and Janice Benthin
Broadcasters: Aboriginal Peoples Television Network and Saskatchewan Community Network
Purchase: Aboriginal Architecture is available for purchase, in Canada, through the National Film Board and BullFrog Films or Visionmaker in the US.
Aboriginal Architecture – Living Architecture is a documentary that explores the way Aboriginal architecture reflects the diversity of environments and Aboriginal cultures across North America.
Everyone is familiar with certain types of Aboriginal architecture. Traditional igloos and tepees are two of the most enduring symbols of North America itself. But how much do we really know about the types of structures Native Peoples designed, engineered and built? For more than three hundred years, Native communities in North America have had virtually no indigenous architecture. Communities have made do with low-cost government housing and community projects designed by strangers in far away places.
Thankfully, across the continent, political, financial and cultural changes have created a renaissance of Native design. Modern Aboriginal architects are turning to ancient forms, adapting them in response to changes in the natural and social environment, and creating contemporary structures that hearken to the past. Employing old and new materials and techniques, and with an emphasis on harmony and balance, Native designers are successfully melding current community needs with tradition. The resulting buildings are testaments to the enduring strength and ingenuity of Aboriginal design.
Featuring expert commentary and stunning imagery, Aboriginal Architecture Living Architecture provides a virtual tour of seven Aboriginal communities--Pueblo, Mohawk, Inuit, Crow, Navajo, Coast Salish and Haida--revealing how each is actively reinterpreting and adapting traditional forms for contemporary purposes.