Chicago-Area Resources

Special Collections Research Center, University of Chicago Library

Archives and Collections

Video Data Bank: Operated out of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, the Video Data Bank is “a leading resource in the United States for video by and about contemporary artists. The VDB’s collection has grown to include the work of more than 600 artists and 6000 video art titles.”

Chicago Film Archives: A regional film archive “dedicated to identifying, collecting, preserving, and providing access to films that represent the Midwest.”

Film Groups / Spaces

Comfort Film (at the Comfort Station): Screenings of local, national, and international films every Wednesday. Our film programmers closely collaborate with a variety of local cinephile organizations and film festivals to bring debuts by independent filmmakers, niche titles from obscure archives, experimental film making, and more (located in Logan Square).

filmfront: A cine-club located in Chicago’s Pilsen neighborhood,  selected programs draw from overlapping spheres of global, classic, documentary, experimental and local cinema. Situated at the core of a diverse community, the filmfront venue invites a cross-cultural dialogue in the form of discussions, panels, lectures, and exhibitions in addition to regular screenings.

Gene Siskel Film Center: Since 1972, the Gene Siskel Film Center of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago has presented cutting edge cinema to an annual audience of 85,000. The programming includes annual film festivals that celebrate diverse voices and international cultures, premieres of trailblazing work by today’s independent filmmakers, restorations and revivals of essential films from cinema history, and insightful, provocative discussions with filmmakers and media artists.

South Side Projections: Presenting films at locations across Chicago’s south side to foster conversation about complex social and political issues. At many screenings, we enlist scholars, activists, and filmmakers to lead discussions, while other screenings offer opportunities to present seldom-seen films of historical and artistic value to the communities of Chicago’s south side.

Outside of Chicago / Illinois

The Moving Image Archive: Located at Indiana University Bloomington, the moving image archive is one of the world's largest educational film and video collections with more than 130 000 films spanning over 80 years of collecting. Many represent rare and last remaining copies of influential 20th century films.