In close connection with their personal cinematographic research, Bêka & Lemoine have been teaching in various universities among which Columbia University GSAPP for the NY/Paris program (USA), Academia di Architettura di Mendrisio (Switerzland), HEAD Geneva (Switerzland).
Since 2019, they are teaching a Diploma unit at the AA Architectural Association School of Architecture in London.

Within architecture schools, their intent is to raise awareness and sensitivity in architecture education towards the potential cinema can bring to architecture and urban knowledge, not as a mere communication tool but as a true autonomous language able to transmit the intensity of a full sensorial experience of space.

Drawing: @queridomies


AA Diploma 16 is a film-based unit working at the crossroads of social sciences and visual arts.The unit is centered around an anthropological quest that tries to understand who is this strange creature we call « homo Urbanus ». How he lives. How he relates to space, in both its public and private dimensions. How he behaves in society, how he relates to others and what relation he has to collective order and rules but also to individual freedom. We also observe his approach to labour, effort and fatigue and how the body expresses the living conditions.

The idea is to develop skills of accurate observation of our ordinary behavior and urban practices, let's say, our most essential needs and habits in relation to the space of the city in order to uncover not only the silent cultural layers but also the political and economical forces that are at play in our cities.

Laboratory for Sensitive Observers - AA Diploma 16 Student's works 2019/2020


The "Sensitive Observation Seminar Series" organized by Ila Bêka, Louise Lemoine and Gili Merin within their Diploma unit at the AA School of Architecture in London 2020/2021, will host during the year a series of guests from different fields - architects, filmmakers, photographers, artists, philosophers, writers, anthropologists and other outsiders of "categories" - who will discuss their own practice, research and working methodology.

In close relation to the unit's studio work and production of films, the seminar will attempt to define what sensitive observation means in order to enlighten the social, political and poetical importance of such practices within architectural education and our profession at large.


In perfect line with the seminar's intention to define what can be sensitive observation in the urban, Thomas Daniell presents a historical overview of the genealogy of Japanese street observers from the 1920s "Modernology" of architect Wajirō Kon, to the 1970s "Thomasson" objects of artist Genpei Akasegawa, the 1980s "Street Observation" of the ROJO group, and the 1990s "Pet Architecture" of Atelier Bow-Wow.

Thomas Daniell is Professor of Architectural History, Theory and Criticism at Kyoto University Japan. A frequent contributor to AA Files, his most recent book is An Anatomy of Influence (AA Publications, 2018).

Out of Ordinary - Lecture by Thomas Daniell - 29/10/2020