The Radical Film Network was founded in 2013 when a group of activists, academics, filmmakers and programmers involved in radical film culture in the UK met to discuss the ways in which they could work together to support its development, growth and sustainability.
Since then, the RFN has grown rapidly, and now consists of more than two hundred organisations from forty countries around the world. Affiliated organisations range from artists’ studios and production collectives to archives, co-ops, distributors, film festivals and exhibition venues, as well as a host of other less easily categorised groups… The membership also includes several hundred individuals, including academics, curators, filmmakers, programmers, researchers and writers. For more information about the organisations in the network, see the Directory of affiliated groups. The RFN’s Mailing List, meanwhile, enables all those involved to share information and ideas around the world. Roughly once a year, RFN members organise a conference – see below and visit our Conferences page for more details.
The RFN is free to join and is open to anyone who is interested or active in ‘radical’ film culture (see below for our best efforts to define that…). To join as an individual, just sign up to the mailing list and get involved however you like. Read more for info on how to join as an organisation.
If you’re part of an organisation, we’ll also get you listed in the RFN’s Directory of affiliated organisations – now the largest database of radical film organisations in the world. Just send a logo, a description and a post or zip code (so we can list you on our Map) to firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll then build you a page and share it with everyone on the mailing list (at the time of writing, the list includes more than 700 users from all over the world).
The RFN is unfunded and is run by a small group of volunteer members of the network. If you’d like to get involved or have any ideas about how it could develop, please contact us at email@example.com.
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As an unfunded, voluntary initiative, the RFN is designed to operate in a fairly decentralised way. There’s no official membership status or application process – membership is simply a matter of joining the mailing list and/or being listed in the Directory, and getting involved as much or as little as you like. This means the RFN can be somewhat rough-and-ready at times, and things can take time to develop – but in an increasingly on-demand world, doing things Slowly can be radical in itself…
The RFN’s stripped back, light-weight design helps minimise the labour required to administrate the network. However, the RFN’s growth – it’s now the largest organisation of its kind in the world – has made it necessary to develop a certain amount of hierarchy, and since 2018 we’ve established a steering group of around twenty members of the network with different roles and responsibilities. You can find out more about the Steering Group here.
Roughly once a year (sometimes more), members of the network will volunteer to host an RFN conference. These events are pretty much the only time the network meets as a network (and of course not everyone in the network can attend each time, which makes things interesting…). Usually, the RFN conferences are partnerships between one or more organisations affiliated to the RFN and a local education institution, but each conference is unique – bespoke to the people and place that host it. For more info on past and forthcoming conferences, see the Conference page. If you’d like to host one, get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.