How would you feel about carrying your home in your pocket or having clothes to live in? 

For most of us, “house” means stability, structure, and permanence. In an age of increasing population and technological gains, today’s mobile society has resulted in a demand, or perhaps a dream, for portable dwellings and dwellings in new settings and situations.

Microtopia explores how architects, artists and ordinary problem-solvers are pushing the limits to find answers to their dreams of portability, flexibility – and of creating independence from “the grid”. 

Modern nomads, homeless people, people in stress, people in need of privacy or seclusion. We hear about the personal reasons behind the dwellings, and to see how they actually work. On the sidewalk, on rooftops, in industrial landscapes and in nature we will see and feel how these abodes meet the dreams set up by their creators. Microtopia deals with a contemporary urgent ideas that are addressed, and solved, in a very surprising way.

Microtopia features work and visions by:
Dré Waapenar, Ana Rewakowics, John Wells, Stéphane Malka, Jay Shafer, Aristide Antonas, Jennifer Siegal, Richart Sowa, Ion Sörvin.

Sleeping Bag Dress by Ana Rewakowicz is a dress that inflates into a tent. Using solar panels and a small fan, it becomes an autonomous habitat. 

Crane rooms is a project by Aristide Antonas based on the concept of moving rooms: the designed vehicles are part of the vast research about a nomadic housing, reinterpreting existing old vehicles or mechanical parts of a recent past and transforming them to inhabited spaces. The units can function as autonomous moving pieces able to be used after a “do it yourself” preparation of a single bedroom.

The PRA system by Stéphane Malka is a modular complex providing an alternative to the defiant lifestyle, by positioning itself in a permanent state of insurrection. The parasite architecture growth is articulated by the vitality of its spontaneous community. A pocket of active resistance created by welcoming the discontented, this act of guerrilla architecture sets out to hijack the “Great arch of fraternity.” Unite the forsaken, the marginalized, refugees, demonstrators, dissenters, hippies, utopians, and the stateless of all kinds.

Jennifer Siegal's Joshua Tree PreFab House is a 900 square-feet get-away-from-it-all weekend house that sits in an expansive desert environment

Mr. Wells is a modern-day Thoreau, who lives in Texas. In October 2007, Mr. Wells bought a 40-acre parcel for $8,000 in cash, adding a 20-acre tract for $5,000 a year and a half later. It took nine days and $1,600 to build the shell of his one-room house, the first structure in a compound that now includes four shipping containers under a soaring arched roof planted on a lacy framework of metal trusses, all of which he made himself.

Treetents by Dutch sculptor and designer Dré WapenaarAccording to Dré Wapenaar, "The story of my tents as they relate to campsites, however, started with the Treetents which were originally designed for the Road Alert Group in England. This group of activists fight against the excessive constructing of highways through forests. During their protest they cover themselves and hide and live in the trees to fight as long as possible against the rushing violence of the chain sawers. The Treetents would provide a comfortable place for them to stay during their habitation of the forest and prevent the trees from being cut down."

Four Lights Houses' Jay Shafer offers up new designs for tiny homes and will further promote small space living through hands-on workshops, books and even tiny house communities. 

Danish artist collective N55, who advocates a nomadic way of life, created a Walking House which uses solar energy to power its hydraulic legs at a leisurely speed of 60 metres an hour.

Duration 55min and 52min.
Director Jesper Wachtmeister
Producer Jonas Kellagher
Distributor Autlook Filmsales

Credits & Pictures: www.solarisfilm.senytimes.