Industry News

AIA announces Film Challenge winners

The American Institute of Architects (AIA) today announced winners of the AIA Film Challenge 2020.

Judges selected the film Dallas Holocaust & Human Rights Museum, by filmmaker John Gordon, as this year’s Grand Prize winner. The Dallas Holocaust & Human Rights Museum, designed by Dallas architecture firm Omniplan, creates a deep and authentic experiential journey that grapples with the most difficult and perplexing issues plaguing humanity. The film will receive a $5,000 cash award as well as other prizes.

This year’s runner up is From Ruins to City by filmmaker Jake Catalanotto. The film presents the Buffalo grain elevators that once fueled the growth of the city as a place of connection for the local community and an experiment in creating a sustainable American city. The film will receive a $3,000 prize.

Boxville: Creating a Just World, by filmmaker Asia Taylor, is the third place winner. Boxville is Chicago’s first street food market and container mall, serving Bronzeville residents and visitors with unique products, services, and food. The film will receive a $2,000 prize.

The People’s Choice Award — A Beacon of Light in Times of Crisis — by filmmaker Jean-Marc Grambert tells how the Meditation Pavilion –a quiet space to nurture the human spirit and create a new sense of community –is designed to unburden the mind. The film received more than 25,000 votes from the public during the voting period, which closed Oct. 4, and will receive a $2,000 prize.

Grand prize, runner up and third place recipients were selected by a panel of judges, while the People’s Choice Award was selected through votes cast online by the public. Judges for the AIA Film Challenge 2020 were commercial photographer and director Kezi Ban; BOKA Powell Associate Principal and Life of an Architect Creator Bob Borson, FAIA; and AIAS Past President Sarah Curry, Assoc. AIA.

The AIA Film Challenge, which is celebrating its sixth anniversary in 2020, is an annual crowdsourced creative competition sponsored by AIA. The challenge brings architects, filmmakers, and storytellers together to produce short films that showcase architects making a positive impact in communities around the globe

Visit to learn more about this year’s winners, and to watch nearly 100 short films produced in 2020, which creatively feature architecture and the built environment. Follow @AIANational and use #AIAFilmChallenge to join the conversation on social media.