Design:Watch

by EddieMcCleister | created - 11 Aug 2016 | updated - 11 Aug 2016 | Public

The Must-See Documentaries for Designers & Artists. http://designers.watch

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1. Design Is One: The Vignellis (2012)

86 min | Documentary, Biography

63 Metascore

Italian-born Massimo and Lella Vignelli are among the world's most influential designers. Throughout their long career, their motto has been, 'If you can't find it, design it' The work ... See full summary »

Directors: Kathy Brew, Roberto Guerra | Stars: Paola Antonelli, Barry Bergdoll, Michael Bierut, Peter Eisenman

Votes: 119 | Gross: $0.02M

2. Eames: The Architect & The Painter (2011)

Not Rated | 85 min | Documentary, Biography

63 Metascore

The husband-and-wife team of Charles and Ray Eames were America's most influential and important industrial designers. Admired for their creations and fascinating as individuals, they have ... See full summary »

Directors: Jason Cohn, Bill Jersey | Stars: Charles Eames, Ray Eames, James Franco, Jeannine Oppewall

Votes: 858 | Gross: $0.15M

3. Visual Acoustics (2008)

Unrated | 83 min | Documentary

67 Metascore

Visual Acoustics celebrates the life and career of Julius Shulman, the world's greatest architectural photographer, whose images brought modern architecture to the American mainstream. ... See full summary »

Director: Eric Bricker | Stars: Frances Anderton, Tom Ford, Frank Gehry, Dustin Hoffman

Votes: 564 | Gross: $0.10M

4. American Look (1958)

27 min | Short

A tribute to the American designer presented by Chevrolet. The fist half of this film is a collage of 1950's American design from appliances to architecture, the second half follows the ... See full summary »

Directors: W.F. Banes, John Thiele | Star: Hunter Phillips

Votes: 21

5. Frank Lloyd Wright (1998)

TV-PG | 146 min | Documentary, Biography, History

A biography of the life and work of the American architect.

Directors: Ken Burns, Lynn Novick | Stars: Edward Herrmann, Philip Bosco, Julie Harris, Sab Shimono

Votes: 647

6. Herb & Dorothy (2008)

Not Rated | 87 min | Documentary, Biography

74 Metascore

Herb and Dorothy Vogel redefine what it means to be an art collector.

Director: Megumi Sasaki | Stars: Paula Antebi, Will Barnet, Robert Barry, Lynda Benglis

Votes: 790 | Gross: $0.19M

7. Helvetica (2007)

Not Rated | 80 min | Documentary

A documentary about typography, graphic design, and global visual culture.

Director: Gary Hustwit | Stars: Manfred Schulz, Massimo Vignelli, Rick Poynor, Wim Crouwel

Votes: 6,880 | Gross: $0.20M

8. Bill Cunningham New York (2010)

Not Rated | 84 min | Documentary, Biography, History

76 Metascore

A profile of the noted and extraordinarily cheerful veteran New York City fashion photographer.

Director: Richard Press | Stars: Bill Cunningham, Anna Wintour, Michael Kors, Editta Sherman

Votes: 4,786 | Gross: $1.51M

9. Milton Glaser: To Inform and Delight (2008)

Not Rated | 73 min | Documentary, Biography

Profiles Milton Glaser (1929- ), America's foremost graphic designer: designer of the iconic "I [heart] N.Y." logo, teacher, and humanitarian. Interviews with Glaser are arranged to take ... See full summary »

Director: Wendy Keys

Votes: 174

10. Vidal Sassoon: The Movie (2010)

PG | 90 min | Documentary

63 Metascore

Vidal Sassoon is more than just a hairdresser-he's a rock star, an artist, a craftsman who "changed the world with a pair of scissors." With the geometric, Bauhaus-inspired hairdos he ... See full summary »

Director: Craig Teper | Stars: Elgin Charles, Irina Khokhlova, Kai-Li Ma, Mary Quant

Votes: 220 | Gross: $0.09M

11. Objectified (2009)

Not Rated | 75 min | Documentary

A feature-length documentary about our complex relationship with manufactured objects and, by extension, the people who design them.

Director: Gary Hustwit | Stars: Paola Antonelli, Chris Bangle, Andrew Blauvelt, Erwan Bouroullec

Votes: 3,190 | Gross: $0.01M

12. Typeface (2009)

Not Rated | 59 min | Documentary

Charting the intersection between rural America and contemporary graphic design.

Director: Justine Nagan

Votes: 207

13. Cutie and the Boxer (2013)

R | 82 min | Documentary, Biography

83 Metascore

This candid New York love story explores the chaotic 40-year marriage of famed boxing painter Ushio Shinohara and his wife, Noriko. Anxious to shed her role as her overbearing husband's assistant, Noriko finds an identity of her own.

Director: Zachary Heinzerling | Stars: Ushio Shinohara, Noriko Shinohara, Alex Shinohara, Ethan Cohen

Votes: 4,234 | Gross: $0.20M

14. Urbanized (2011)

Not Rated | 85 min | Documentary

A documentary about the design of cities, which looks at the issues and strategies behind urban design and features some of the world's foremost architects, planners, policymakers, builders, and thinkers.

Director: Gary Hustwit | Stars: Rem Koolhaas, Joshua David, Amanda M. Burden, Norman Foster

Votes: 1,877

15. Alles Moet Nieuw - Piet Zwart (2012)

75 min | Documentary

Everything Must Change - Piet Zwart is a documentary about the influential Dutch designer Piet Zwart.

Director: Sherman De Jesus | Stars: Piet Zwart, Kees Broos, Wim Crouwel, Jacob Derwig

Votes: 7

16. Jean-Michel Basquiat: The Radiant Child (2010)

Not Rated | 88 min | Documentary

74 Metascore

Director Tamra Davis pays homage to her friend in this definitive documentary but also delves into Basquiat as an iconoclast. His dense, bebop-influenced neoexpressionist work emerged while... See full summary »

Director: Tamra Davis | Stars: Jean Michel Basquiat, Julian Schnabel, Larry Gagosian, Bruno Bischofberger

Votes: 1,735 | Gross: $0.26M

17. How to Make a Book with Steidl (2010 TV Movie)

Not Rated | 88 min | Documentary

In this age of digital media, Gerhard Steidl stands as one of the few remaining publishers to maintain an unwavering commitment to the quality and craftsmanship of the printed book.

Directors: Jörg Adolph, Gereon Wetzel | Stars: Robert Adams, Robert Frank, Günter Grass, Karl Lagerfeld

Votes: 135

18. Exit Through the Gift Shop (2010)

R | 87 min | Documentary, Comedy, Crime

85 Metascore

The story of how an eccentric French shop-keeper and amateur film-maker attempted to locate and befriend Banksy, only to have the artist turn the camera back on its owner. The film contains... See full summary »

Director: Banksy | Stars: Banksy, Mr. Brainwash, Space Invader, Debora Guetta

Votes: 57,367 | Gross: $3.29M

19. Linotype: The Film (2012)

Not Rated | 75 min | Documentary, History, News

Linotype: The Film is a feature-length documentary centered around the Linotype typecasting machine. Called the 'Eighth Wonder of the World' by Thomas Edison, it revolutionized printing and... See full summary »

Director: Douglas Wilson | Star: Elln Hagney

Votes: 180

20. Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry (2012)

R | 91 min | Documentary

81 Metascore

A documentary that chronicles artist and activist Ai Weiwei as he prepares for a series of exhibitions and gets into an increasing number of clashes with the Chinese government.

Director: Alison Klayman | Stars: Weiwei Ai, Dan Ai, Lao Ai, Lee Ambrozy

Votes: 3,877 | Gross: $0.53M

21. Between the Folds (2008)

G | 56 min | Documentary

Depicts a cast of fine artists and eccentric scientists (from MIT and NASA) who have devoted their lives to the unlikely medium of modern origami. Through their determination to reinterpret... See full summary »

Director: Vanessa Gould | Stars: Erik D. Demaine, Martin L. Demaine, Vincent Floderer, Miri Golan

Votes: 766

22. Just Like Being There (2012)

Not Rated | 81 min | Documentary

In the gig poster community, creating artwork is more than just a career - it is a way of life. These artists are at the forefront of an expansion of the gig poster genre. In a community ... See full summary »

Director: Scout Shannon | Stars: Daniel Danger, Jay Ryan, Kevin Tong

Votes: 133

23. Art & Copy (2009)

TV-PG | 89 min | Documentary

62 Metascore

ART & COPY is a powerful new film about advertising and inspiration. Directed by Doug Pray (SURFWISE, SCRATCH, HYPE!), it reveals the work and wisdom of some of the most influential ... See full summary »

Director: Doug Pray | Stars: Mary Wells, Dan Wieden, Hal Riney, Lee Clow

Votes: 1,641

24. Sign Painters (2014)

Not Rated | 81 min | Documentary

At a time when most American cityscapes are dominated by computer created signage, Sign Painters takes a close look at the past, present, and hopeful future of the hand paint sign industry in the USA.

Directors: Faythe Levine, Sam Macon

Votes: 95

25. Style Wars (1983 TV Movie)

Not Rated | 69 min | Documentary, Music

A documentary that exposes the rich growing subculture of hip-hop that was developing in New York City in the late '70s and early '80s, specifically focusing on graffiti art and breakdancing.

Director: Tony Silver | Stars: Demon, Kase 2, Eric Haze, Spank

Votes: 2,348

26. The Visual Language of Herbert Matter (2010)

78 min | Documentary

Feature length documentary film about graphic designer, photographer and visual artist Herbert Matter.

Director: Reto Caduff | Stars: Robert Frank, Massimo Vignelli, John Cohen, Alex Matter

Votes: 15

27. Gerhard Richter Painting (2011)

Unrated | 97 min | Documentary

77 Metascore

A documentary on the German artist that includes glimpses at his studio, which has not been seen in decades.

Director: Corinna Belz | Stars: Gerhard Richter, Norbert Arns, Hubert Becker, Sabine Moritz-Richter

Votes: 573 | Gross: $0.24M

28. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Sketches of Frank Gehry (2005)

PG-13 | 83 min | Documentary, Biography

71 Metascore

A look at the life and work of the renown architect.

Director: Sydney Pollack | Stars: Frank Gehry, Sydney Pollack, Julian Schnabel, Charles Arnoldi

Votes: 1,445 | Gross: $0.44M

29. Beautiful Losers (2008)

Not Rated | 90 min | Documentary, Music

59 Metascore

This documentary follows the lives and careers of a collective group of Do-it-yourself artists and designers who inadvertently affected the art world.

Directors: Aaron Rose, Joshua Leonard | Stars: Thomas Campbell, Shepard Fairey, Jo Jackson, Chris Johanson

Votes: 1,239 | Gross: $0.06M

30. The Line King: The Al Hirschfeld Story (1996)

Not Rated | 86 min | Documentary, Biography

The childhood, adolescence, and incredible adult years of Al Hirshfeld, celebrated creator of thousands of line drawings of famous people - many in the entertainment industry - over a span ... See full summary »

Director: Susan Warms Dryfoos | Stars: Julie Andrews, Lauren Bacall, Carol Channing, Cy Coleman

Votes: 199

31. How Much Does Your Building Weigh, Mr Foster? (2010)

Not Rated | 78 min | Documentary, Biography

51 Metascore

The film traces the rise of one of the world's premier architects, Norman Foster, and his unending quest to improve the quality of life through design.

Directors: Carlos Carcas, Norberto López Amado | Stars: Norman Foster, Deyan Sudjic

Votes: 622 | Gross: $0.01M

32. The Cool School (2008)

Not Rated | 86 min | Documentary

68 Metascore

How LA Learned to Love Modern Art. A lesson in how a few renegade artists built an art scene from scratch.

Director: Morgan Neville | Stars: Eve Babitz, John Baldessari, Larry Bell, Billy Al Bengston

Votes: 207

34. Beauty Is Embarrassing (2012)

Not Rated | 88 min | Documentary, Biography, Comedy

72 Metascore

A documentary on the life and current times of artist Wayne White.

Director: Neil Berkeley | Stars: Wayne White, Mimi Pond, Paul Reubens, Mark Mothersbaugh

Votes: 1,008

35. Future by Design (2006)

Not Rated | 86 min | Documentary, Sci-Fi

Future by Design shares the life and far-reaching vision of Jacque Fresco, considered by many to be a modern day Da Vinci. Peer to Einstein and Buckminster Fuller, Jacque is a self-taught ... See full summary »

Director: William Gazecki | Stars: William Gazecki, Jacque Fresco, Larry King, Roxanne Meadows

Votes: 1,317

37. Clean Lines, Open Spaces (2012 TV Movie)

56 min | Documentary

"Clean Lines, Open Spaces" looks at mid-century modern architecture in Arkansas and how the post war building boom brought modern design to the state. Talking to home owners, architects and... See full summary »

Director: Mark Wilcken

Votes: 5

38. The Successor of Kakiemon (2012)

49 min | Documentary, Biography, Drama

Handing down the craft and beliefs from generation to generation for over 400 years can be a heavy weight. This unique story follows a modern-day Japanese family that has transformed ... See full summary »

Director: Suzanne Raes

Votes: 9

39. PressPausePlay (2011)

Not Rated | 80 min | Documentary, Music

The digital revolution of the last decade has unleashed creativity and talent of people in an unprecedented way, unleashing unlimited creative opportunities. But does democratized culture ... See full summary »

Directors: David Dworsky, Victor Köhler | Stars: Apparat, Ólafur Arnalds, Scott Belsky, Robyn Carlsson

Votes: 1,454

40. Print the Legend (2014)

100 min | Documentary, Biography, Drama

Follows the people racing to bring the hot new 3D printing technology to your home, documenting the "Macintosh Moment" of this revolution and exploring what it takes to live the American Dream.

Directors: Luis Lopez, Clay Tweel | Stars: Chris Anderson, Bruce Bradshaw, Craig Broady, Bill Buel

Votes: 1,640

41. Tim's Vermeer (2013)

PG-13 | 80 min | Documentary, History

76 Metascore

Inventor Tim Jenison seeks to understand the painting techniques used by Dutch Master Johannes Vermeer.

Director: Teller | Stars: Tim Jenison, Penn Jillette, Martin Mull, Philip Steadman

Votes: 7,087 | Gross: $1.66M

42. The Life and Times of Frida Kahlo (2005 TV Movie)

90 min | Documentary

A documentary feature about the life of the Mexican painter Frida Kahlo.

Director: Amy Stechler | Stars: Heinz Berggruen, Estela de Bassagoda, Lila Downs, Arturo Estrada

Votes: 157

43. Coast Modern (2012)

Not Rated | 56 min | Documentary, History

Coast Modern is an independent documentary by directors Mike Bernard and Gavin Froome produced by Twofold Films. Travelling along the Pacific North West coastline from LA to Vancouver, the ... See full summary »

Directors: Mike Bernard, Gavin Froome

Votes: 53

44. Design the New Business (2011)

38 min | Short

The evolving relationship between design and business is illustrated and discussed in insightful interviews and inspiring case studies.

Director: Erik Roscam Abbing | Stars: Erik Roscam Abbing, Deniz Arik, Ralf Beuker, Maria Bezaitis

Votes: 621

45. Finding Vivian Maier (2013)

Not Rated | 83 min | Documentary, Biography, Mystery

75 Metascore

A documentary on the late Vivian Maier, a nanny whose previously unknown cache of 100,000 photographs earned her a posthumous reputation as one of the most accomplished street photographers.

Directors: John Maloof, Charlie Siskel | Stars: Vivian Maier, John Maloof, Daniel Arnaud, Simon Amédé

Votes: 11,505 | Gross: $1.51M

46. Why Beauty Matters (2009)

59 min | Documentary

Contemporary philosopher Roger Scruton presents a fascinating argument for the importance of beauty in our art and in our lives, and explores what truly is and is not beautiful, regardless of its beholder.

Star: Roger Scruton

Votes: 200

47. John Portman: A Life of Building (2011)

Not Rated | 52 min | Documentary, Biography

Once a maverick who was nearly run out of the American Institute of Architects, John Portman is now recognized as one of the most innovative and imitated architects ever. Over 45 years, ... See full summary »

Director: Ben Loeterman

Votes: 17

48. Marina Abramovic: The Artist Is Present (2012)

Not Rated | 106 min | Documentary, Biography, History

74 Metascore

A documentary that follows the Serbian performance artist as she prepares for a retrospective of her work at The Museum of Modern Art in New York.

Directors: Matthew Akers, Jeff Dupre | Stars: Marina Abramovic, Ulay, Klaus Biesenbach, David Balliano

Votes: 5,099 | Gross: $0.09M



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