40 years of Light Cone

Light Cone, based in Paris, celebrates its 40th anniversary in 2022. Since its beginnings, it has been dedicated to the distribution, dissemination, research and preservation of experimental cinema, which it promotes in France and in the world. The catalog, which has grown considerably in fifteen years (from 3,500 to 6,000 titles, thus becoming one of largest and most important archives of experimental cinema in the world), brings together films from very diverse origins, geographically, historically and formally.

Since 2007, the structure has created important mechanisms to help filmmakers better promote their work and thus increase the visibility of experimental cinema among audiences. Aware of the importance of the practices known as “expanded cinema”, Light Cone created Scratch Expanded , an evening of performances, installations and multi-screen projections, and in reaction to the fact that experimental filmmakers almost never have access to filmmaker residencies, which are often dedicated to classic film production, the artist residencies Atelier 105 were born.

In 2019, the annual film series Scratch Collection was launched. Every two years, Light Cone entrusts the programming of this new screening series to a guest, who is granted a residency with the task of revisiting the history of experimental cinema through the exploration of this extraordinary collection, taking a fresh and singular look at Light Cone’s film catalogue, marked by his or her own subjectivity.

In the year that celebrates its 40th anniversary, Light Cone presents in Lisbon a list of films, curated by IndieLisboa. There are four thematic programmes to discover at Cinemateca Portuguesa: From Fear (of Danger or Sensation of Distress) to Progressive Comfort, NETSPLOITATION (2000-2019), Eroticism and Suggestion, and Intimacies. A focus that covers decades of experimental cinema and brings together filmmakers such as Maya Deren, John Smith, Michael Brynntrup, Neozoon, Peggy Ahwesh, Nazli Dincel and Barbara Hammer, among many others.