In Brief

Design Film Festival issues open call for submissions


30 June 2020

The Design Film Festival has issued an open call for submissions of films for an online exhibition due to launch in September 2020.

Overseen by HEAD-Genève, Parsons The New School and Kingston School of Art, the festival is devoted to both films about design – its production methods, distribution networks and consumption – and films conceived of as pieces of design themselves.

The festival is being jointly hosted by The Design Museum and the Institut Français du Royaume-Uni, and is now looking for submissions from designers, filmmakers and artists created over the last three years.

Submissions are encouraged to not only submit films, but also work in progress and research, including prototypes, edits, samples and storyboards.

The festival's organisers say: “At a time of unprecedented restrictions on travel and the near-exclusive reliance on digital networks, the festival presents new forms of engagement through the moving image. These films carry progressive and alternative information and communicate ideas through a universal and innovative language.”

The project is being led by curators and educators Alexadra Midal of HEAD, Ulrich Lehmann of Parsons, and Jana Scholze of Kingston, who have led “Montage: Design and Film”, a joint graduate programme that explores the links between design and film.

Potential participants are asked to submit their work via Vimeo link to While not mandatory, those applying are encouraged to also submit up to five images that document the research and development process behind the final submission. The size for each image should not exceed 1MB, and each should be accompanied by a descriptive caption.

“By sharing not only completed works, but also works-in-progress with a global audience, this exhibition presents initial attempts, discarded ideas and prototypes,” says the festival. “It highlights research and development to understand design as a distinctively procedural and collaborative field of creative labour.”

The deadline for submission is 17 July 2020. All submissions will be viewed by a selection committee including Midal, Lehmann and Scholze, before the final selection is made by an international jury. There are no fees associated with submission.

The Design Film Festival is being curated by the MA Curating Contemporary Design at Kingston University in partnership with the Design Museum.