FIRST Milano Design Film Festival Greece — Athens | Design as seen at the cinema in Athens

DATE 2024 (Dates to be Announced)

LOCATIONBenaki Museum | Pireos & The Greek Film Archive (Tainiothiki tis Ellados)


MILANO DESIGN FILM FESTIVAL GREECE—ATHENS | Main Event | Design As Seen at the Cinema in Athens | 2024 (Dates to be announced)

Opening Night Ceremony | Upon registration (Dates to be Announced)
Benaki Museum, 138 Pireos St.

Official program launching | Free Entrance (Dates to be Announced)
Greek Film Archive / Tainiothiki tis Ellados, 48 Iera Odos St. & 134–136 Megalou Alexandrou St.

Selected title of the general programme:
“Lights on. Projecting our Contemporary Future”

3 days, 20+ films (the majority Greek Premieres), & Discussions, Talks, Workshops, Parallel Activities & 20+ Greek and international guests

Guest curator 2024
Michael Anastassiades with his dedicated section, titled “Arecibo Message”

What is it?

Milano Design Film Festival was born in 2013 to set an eagerly awaited yearly rendezvous with cinema and Design in Milan. A four-day event — preceded by a grand opening at the Triennale di Milano — that brings together stories of architects and designers, styles, avant-garde movements, and investigations into major social issues.

Milano Design Film Festival Greece & Cyprus, directed by Annie Markitanis, is meant to establish an annual appointment with Cinema and Design in Athens, expanding MDFF’s successful concept and format through a series of future stopovers around Greece and Cyprus.
The first event of MDFF Greece–Athens, which is to be held in 2024 (Dates to be announced soon) titled “Lights On—Projecting our Contemporary Future”, held under the auspices of the Municipality of Athens, the Italian Embassy, Italian Cultural Institute of Athens, Hellenic-Italian Chamber of Athens, Ministry of Culture and Sports, Greek National Tourism Organisation, and the General Secretariat for Research and Technology, and whose purpose is, to investigate our current reality and the contemporary living—in all of their manifestations.

A festival that investigates our current reality and contemporary living in all its forms, presenting a variety of points of view and projects, and explaining what projecting our lives means — in the near and distant future. The event projects ways of building, inhabiting, and experiencing cities, as well as delves into the relationship between man and nature. MDFF Greece — Athens explores and explains the different dimensions and expressions of such key themes as Architecture, Design, Sustainability, Artificial Intelligence, Urban Life, Biography, Man & Nature, and the Art of Thinking.

Following the notion “Learning by Watching,” the Event relies on the prominence and potential of the cinematic language in our digital era. The unique ability of cinema as the Seventh Art to inform, investigate, educate, entertain, engage, and bring together viewers from all walks of life. An event addressed to a wide range of audiences, from specialized professionals to those who consider a festival a pleasant and unique opportunity to get to know the world of design through cinema or, vice versa, to discover cinema as a tool for describing architecture and design.

MDFF Greece — Athens aspires to form a Greek MDFF community. The event provides a new context to erect a cultural bridge between Greece and Italy through a creative import and export, building new connections, and engaging the wider audience. Most importantly, MDFF Greece — Athens aims to bring forth national and international companies who see Athens as a new place, suitable to share their stories.

For the first time, the MDFF special curatorship “formula” for an in-depth thematic analysis and an independent gaze by a renowned professional — until now bound to the Milanese Event — arrives in Greece, with the presence of a prestigious name in the Design sector: The internationally known and awarded Cypriot- born, London-based designer Michael Anastassiades.
Michael Anastassiades will give his original contribution and independent interpretation to the Edition’s programming, through the selection and presentation of film titles and curation of special talks, all under his dedicated guest curator’s section, titled “Arecibo Message”.


MILANO DESIGN FILM FESTIVAL GREECE—ATHENS | Prelaunch mini-event series | Design in Film Around the City of Athens | 2-8 NOVEMBER 2020

Although, as everything shows, 2020 will go down in history as a year of absence, ironically, it is also the year that highlighted our basic, instinctive need for physical connection. 

Following this logic, the Milano Design Film Festival Greece-Athens, which due to the worsening of the pandemic and the strict measures that have been taken, has transferred the main event to the Benaki Museum and Greek Film Archive for 2024 (Dates to be announced) chooses to introduce itself to the public with one week of prelaunch mini-event series titled, “Design in Film around the city of Athens”, which will serve as a precursor of the main event, providing the public with, in this way, a first “taste” of MDFF, for all which is to follow in 2024—whilst showcasing a unique way of viewing and experiencing, the identity of this new festival organisation.

A prelaunch mini-event series consisting of screenings, discussions, workshops, walking tours and e-bike rides with an underlying architectural theme. 

Most of these activities will take place in physical spaces or in outdoor locations in Athens, while some will be held online.

As the artistic director of MDFF Greece & Cyprus, Annie Markitanis noted: “Today’s unfavorable conditions have been the springboard, for an exchange of thoughts and ideas, with organisations/institutions/spaces, and people who support initiatives, of social and cultural interest…Our aim is to keep our contact with the city “alive” and to “marry” the curated content with the philosophy of each of the institution and initiatives involved…” “…We found ourselves in a dilemma: to present the whole program of our first edition online, or to transfer the physical event, once again, in 2024 We believe that considering that this is the first acquaintance of MDFF with the Greek public it requires – to a certain extent – the audience’s physical presence. So we chose a middle way: to transfer the key event in 2024, but in the meantime to introduce the Athenian public with a prelaunch week of mini-events, indicative of the philosophy of MDFF Greece, utilizing the current participation allowance of 9 people per gathering, and including the digital realm – as an alternative, a complementary outlet, but not as a solution.”

The prelaunch mini-event series, curated by MDFF Greece, will take place on 2 — 8 November of 2020, in collaboration with the following organizations: Italian Cultural Institute of Athens (in the context of Italian Design Day 2020, organized by the Italian Embassy in Athens with the theme: “Designing the future. Development, Innovation, Sustainability, and Beauty, and as part of Autumn all Italiana Online [online tribute to the culture of “Made in Italy” in collaboration with MDFF), Blue Cycle, Vorres Museum, Atelier Cycladon 8 (in collaboration with the architect Dionysis Sotovikis), French Institute of Greece (Designing life in space # 1 # 2), Architecture Kids Athens (AKA), Athens Municipal Maker Space (ΠΟΙΩ)/Serafeio, Typical Organisation for Standards & Order, Esperinos (in collaboration with architect Evi Sougkara and designer Stamos Michael), InMind Headquarters & Showroom (within the frame of The Future of Work Design Week in collaboration with Archisearch & Design Ambassador), Shila Hotel and the European Cultural Center.

What is the relationship of the famous actor Jackie Chan with the world’s first fully mobile plastics recycling machine – The Trashpresso?

What is the innovative material Marwoolus?

In what ways a dynamic, targeted DIY culture can be enhanced through the possibilities offered by a modern, open to the community Maker Space workshop?

In what ways drones will transform cities? In what way are drones bringing in a new special level, the aerial one? Will “Aerial highways”relieve pressure on roads as deliveries and human transportation take to the skies?

Will tomorrow’s offices be smarter or more human or both? How will technological advances speed up these new forms of working for the future digital generation?

Which are the challenges to consider when designing the practical and emotional aspects of life in space? 

How a networked understanding of materials can be applied to a more holistic approach to design, and draw connections between timber’s physical materiality and the abstract but pervasive conditions of exploitation, colonialism, and consumerism?

In what ways do ‘political designs’ shape our environment and us?

How can we can make the most of the fishing nets, ropes and mooring ropes with the help of new technologies?

What is the Power of an Archive of drafts, sketches, models, renderings, drawings, particular techniques of completed structures?

How do we interpret the new condition of the post-modern cities?

What are Earth Stations and how do they foster productive human relationships? 

How well do we know our city? What do we know? Is there more?

How can we assemble the multi-faceted portrait of contemporary Athens, and explore the notions of community, tourism, inhabitation and the neighbourhood, through architecture, typography, collective histories, urban myths and the vernacular?

Which is the notion of a subversive architecture that crosses boundaries between the disciplines, establishing itself as a socially relevant art form?

What is today’s meaning of home? Which are the living rituals that act as an experiential catalyst of living and hospitality and how can design be the propel engine of a personalized experience?

Which are the protagonists of The Golden Age of Italian automotive design?

Who designed the futuristic architecture of the the groundbreaking holiday home of Michelangelo Antonioni and his muse Monica Vitti?

Who was the first lady of Italian design?

Which is the secret soul behind objects, projects, materials, techniques and traditions?

In what way becoming familiar with one’s own modernist heritage and adapting it to the needs of today can be part of an architectural curriculum for kids and young people as a possible agency for change?

From a psychological perspective which is the architecture’s role in constructing one’s identity in respect to notions of permanence and change?


  1. Each mini-event will not exceed the number provided by law, and the COVID-19 protection measures will be strictly applied, as per all the specifications set by the General Secretariat for Civil Protection and the National Public Health Organization (ΕΟΔΥ). 
  2. Due to limited attendance allowance, a priority order of participation will be followed
  3. Participants must arrive 30 minutes earlier than the start time of each mini-event
  4. Face masks must be worn by all participants at all times, both outdoors and indoors
  5. The seating placement follows all necessary safety distances
  6. The mini-events have no commercial character 
  7. Participation to the mini-events is possible only upon registration via Eventbrite.
  8. Α separate registration is necessary for each on the mini-events you wish to participate/attend



©Mauro Montana
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© Still Frames from "Sette Miliardi" narrated by Andrea Branzi, Max Rommel, Italy, 2014, 10’⁣
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