Museum? Cinema? Gallery? The Lichtspiel is all of those things, but above all it’s a place for people to meet and make discoveries. When Bern’s film archive had to move, its collection of old projectors rolled through the city. An “elephant parade” in homage to a cinema that no longer exists.
The Lichtspiel association has rescued a huge number of projectors, films, documents and advertising material that might otherwise have crumbled away, all collected by cinema technician Walter A. Ritschard who died in 1998. The collection was stored in an old chocolate factory on the edge of Bern.
Amongst the dusty old projectors, films were regularly shown to film aficionados.
In autumn 2012 the association had to leave its old premises. About 100 volunteers helped with the move one Sunday in September. Together they hauled the 40 or so projectors on wooden carts through the city to their new home several kilometres away. An unusual way to bring the archive into the public eye.