Playtime was an urban installation and outdoor cinema, inspired by the Jacques Tati film Play Time (1967). The project’s design was the result of an open competition which called for proposals inspired by the film. The winning entry was ‘The Night Club’ – designed by Barnaby Bennett, Mark Leong and Nick Sargent.

Barnaby led the construction of the project, and the design of the seats with Trent Hiles.

The cinema played various films by Jacques Tati including: Jour de Fete (1947), Play Time (1967), Mon Oncle (1958), Les Vacances de Monsieur Hulot (1953), Trafic (1971) and Parade (1974).

Tati is perhaps most famous for his films about Monsieur Hulot – a maladroit yet upbeat French gentleman played by the director himself. His films are marked by a spirit of curiosity and comic cultural commentary. His later works are set in a futuristic France of modernist glass, steel and rather unusual inventions. Iconic Parisian landmarks are frequently reduced to two-dimensional reflections in glass. Tati’s grandiose scheme for the set of his last major film, Play Time, involved the three-year construction of a vast mini-city (‘Tativille’) incorporating modern centrally-heated four-storey buildings, expansive portable architecture and functioning transport infrastructure.

More information can be found at the Gap Filler website.