CINEMATEK is an international film archive with a focus on Belgian, regional cinema; ‘local in an international context’. As a scientific institution, we want to share our archive and know-how with partners in the research field. As an institution of public utility, we want to share our passion for cinema with a broad educational and direct audience action. With one of the largest and most eclectic film collections in the world, the Royal Belgian Film Archive navigates between the artistic expression of authors-filmmakers, accessible entertainment for a wide audience and scientific research with a historical and social slant.
The operation of CINEMATEK can be distinguished in those three domains; an archival function (the sustainable conservation of our entire collection), an investigative function (promoting research based on this collection) and a public function (programming films from this collection). Together, these three domains form the entire field on which the Royal Belgian Film Archive plays.
Cinema carries within it the rich culture of our humanity: it not only represents the result of an individual artistic expression, but also gives us an anthropological insight and as such reflects on our society. The collection of the Royal Belgian Film Archive offers us a detailed look at that recent past; who we were and who we are. It is important that we do not exclude any film or document from being shown, but that we do frame certain films appropriately with special attention to the gender spectrum, racism and the impact of film on representation.
With our collection of films and film-related and our know-how about cinema and conservation, we want to actively stimulate research - together with universities, colleges, film schools and other partners. Today, more than ever, there is a need for different voices that can contribute to cultural and social dialogue. Voices that can come from the sciences, from the arts and from a knowledge of our history. With in-depth research, diverse programming and targeted education, CINEMATEK wants to contribute to this ongoing social conversation.