A screening room for programming about media arts, activism, and mediated experience


Fields of Knowledge
  • Aesthetics / Media
  • Curatorial practice
  • Social Justice

Organizing Institutions


Contributing Institutions

Penn Cinema Studies

Opens to public



4017 Walnut St
Philadelphia, PA 19104

Opening September 2017, Slought's Mediatheque is a screening room dedicated to programming about media arts and activism. Today, images are circulated and consumed at an ever-increasing rate. Images mediate all facets of our experience, including our relation to self and society. The Mediatheque reflects and resists these conditions of mediation. Drawing on diverse media formations—from independent cinema and community media to mainstream news and productions—our weekly programs explore visual strategies that critically engage art, politics and public life.

The Mediatheque emerges from our long-standing commitment to the projected image. Our collaborations with pioneering filmmakers, film theorists, and media activists including Werner Herzog, Agnes Varda, Stan Douglas, Peter Greenaway, and Laura Mulvey have raised urgent questions about the status and power of images today. Building on these interventions, our regularly scheduled programs explore questions such as: what is the relation of the image to commodity and spectacle? How do images construct history, knowledge and public memory? How is the ubiquity of screens redefining modes of spectatorship? How does media empower social justice?

The Mediatheque embraces an open curatorial model. We invite artists, scholars, curators and community members to partner with us and collaborate on programming. Our screenings are often programmed by local and international collaborators and foreground diverse issues, publics and media practices. Designed as an intimate screening room for 15 people, it also functions as a public archive, a community resource, and a flexible learning environment for courses and other educational offerings. Contact us to request special screenings or propose an event.

"The spectacle has spread itself to the point where it now permeates all reality.... There is no place left where people can discuss the realities which concern them, because they can never lastingly free themselves from the crushing presence of media discourse and of the various forces organized to relay it."

— Guy Debord, Comments on the Society of the Spectacle (1988)