Archives Jean Painlevé
38 avenue des Ternes
75017 Paris France


Please note that the Archives Jean Painlevé is not open to the public. It is open by appointment to interested individuals, scholars and curators for study and research.




The Archives Jean Painlevé owns all rights, title and interest in and to the names, likeliness and works of Jean Painlevé. Painlevé’s works are protected by copyright until the year 2059. The publication, reproduction, distribution, display or creation of derivative works of any of the text, images, films, trademarks or of any other content appearing on this website must be authorized in writing by the Archives Jean Painlevé.


History and mission


In 1930, Jean Painlevé established several not-for-profit organizations to further public knowledge and appreciation of science and documentary films, as well as a production company to make his own films independently. Today, the Archives Jean Painlevé is devoted to preserving and promoting the enduring achievements of Jean Painlevé and the aesthetic and philosophical principles by which he lived. It serves as a unique centre for the understanding of Painlevé’s legacy and an information resource for the development of innovative research and scholarship on Painlevé’s life and work.

The Archives carries out its mission by working on screenings, exhibitions and publications and assisting with research. It conserves an important collection of works, including thousands of film prints, original photographs and writings. The Archives is dedicated to the storing, cataloguing and the preservation of this collection through film restoration projects and public programs.

The Archives is also charged with the conservation of an unsurpassed number of historical documents covering all aspects of Painlevé’s life and career. Among these are cameras and equipment, photographs and films, pamphlets, magazines and press clippings, correspondence, documents showing every aspect of the making of the films (film stock, laboratory work, budgets, shooting journals, notes) as well as Painlevé’s personal items such as books, objects and artworks.

The archive is located in a townhouse in the center of Paris that was purchased by Jean Painlevé in the 1930s to house his nonprofit organizations, offices, projection space. From 1961 to 1966, Jean Painlevé shared this office space with the International Federation of Film Archives (FIAF) while the organization was in difficulty and looking for new headquarters.


Website Credits


Design and project management:
Development: Alex Kern
Special thanks: Jan Steinbach