The Space Between: short films


February 29, 2024



A stylized still shot from The Space Between short film: Post Polio. A woman participating in a pool aqua-cise workout designed for Polio survivors.

The conversation held with a stranger while watching a game, the coffee shared between neighbours, the mentorship provided to someone learning a new skill. The humble, transformative power of human connection.

This is where the magic happens.

The Space Between is a growing collection of short films that offer a glimpse into the lives of the people who use the public buildings we design: the people we design for.

In each film, you're invited into a private story, with real individuals who share how these community spaces have touched their lives.

After 40 years, we've heard a lot of stories emphasizing how our work can deliver life-affirming, life changing impact. We're excited to now share these stories with you.

A stylized still shot from the short film, Dance Party. It shows a man leading a dance troupe, reflected within a studio mirror.

“Public spaces have the power to foster understanding, inspire meaningful community participation and ownership, and instill joy. Every park, market, street and alleyway is a litmus test for belonging.”

Jay Pitter, Canadian Placemaker and Author

A stylized still shot from The Space Between film, The Student. It is a close crop image of a man playing a guitar.

Joining us on the journey is long-time friend and collaborator Inder Nirwan of Kahani Pictures.

Inder founded Kahani Pictures from a deep love of people and their stories. After more than a decade in the film and television industry, he recognized the power of authentic storytelling —from diverse community voices —to galvanize and inspire people. Our partnership was formed on a mutual vision to uncover the overlooked and amplify the positive potential of our communities.

The films of The Space Between series share slices of life in some of hcma’s favorite civic facilities. Each story captures a personal perspective, while celebrating our universal need for community and connection.

A need that is more pronounced than ever.

These videos are a gentle reminder of all that can be gained when we open ourselves up —to new experiences, different ways of seeing the world, and most importantly, to each other. 

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