About Us

Shapeshifters Cinema is a 40-seat experimental microcinema housed in a beautiful, one-story Victorian located on the historic Bret Harte Boardwalk in Oakland’s Jack London District.

Shapeshifters started in 2012 as a monthly, volunteer-run series focused on expanded cinema. In the fall of 2018 we signed the lease on our own space with a vision of providing a broader range of experimental and expanded film, art and performance.


We are excited to launch the new Shapeshifters Cinema Membership Program! Our membership program is a critical way for us to continue as a sustainable, creative, arts-focused venue in Oakland. If you signed up for a membership during our recent Indiegogo campaign, your membership privileges start immediately, but the timeline won't officially begin until we are able to safely open our doors for live events again. For anyone still interested in signing up to become a member, please contact us directly.


567 5th Street
Oakland, CA 94607

Our building is wheelchair-accessible and has one wheelchair-accessible bathroom.


We are temporarily closed, except for special pop-up events.


Gilbert Guerrero - Co-director
Kathleen Quillian - Co-director
Ellie Vanderlip - Workshop Coordinator

Show Your Support

Make a donation to support Shapeshifters Cinema

Donations are tax-deductible through our fiscal sponsor, San Francisco Cinematheque, a 501(c)3 nonprofit.


Our intimate, 40-seat cinema is able to host a range of performances and events by contemporary artists working in film, video, sound, music, multimedia and performance. Along with screenings and performances, you will also find workshops, salons, artist talks and lectures. Our focus is primarily on experimental and artist-made.

Upcoming Programs & Events


Summer Solstice Pop-up
Sunday, June 21, 2020

We are opening our new shop between 1-5pm on Sunday, June 21st for local pickup of purchases made online (wear a mask please!). Members and donors to Shapeshifters' recent Indiegogo fundraising campaign are also invited to come by to pick up your perks during this time. We will be enforcing all necessary social-distancing protocols and allowing only one person in the shop at a time. For this special event we will be selling pre-made pizza kits by Oakland-based Fist of Flour Pizza Co. that you can bring home to bake up for an easy at-home dinner to eat while you enjoy Shapeshifters evening program featuring composer/musician Guillermo Galindo. These should be ordered ahead of time (see our on-line store) for pick-up during pop-up hours. Put in your order now

Detail from NSV 11 (nososcarida viscosa) by Guillermo Galindo

Guillermo Galindo live performance webcast
Sunday, June 21, 2020

Guillermo Galindo will be performing -- live from Shapeshifters Cinema -- a variation on Sonic Botany, a project exploring how science has played, and continues to play, a role in colonizing and conquest. Viewers are invited to watch this live performance by tuning in from 7-8pm to http://shapeshifterscinema.com/livestream/.


Expanded Cinema


Our venue is available to rent for private events.
More about rentals


Shapeshifters' store is now open for business (on-line only, currently)! Our store features an eclectic range of DVDs, books, CDs and other artist-made items. Browse the selection here

Ether Ship 2020

Ether Ship, January 11, 2020 at Shapeshifters Cinema


Elena Pardo, December 6, 2019 at Shapeshifters Cinema


Lynne Sachs, November 10, 2019 at Shapeshifters Cinema


Minoosh Zomorodinia, October 13, 2019 at Shapeshifters Cinema


Jeremy Rourke, September 20, 2019 at Shapeshifters Cinema


Jeremy Rourke, September 20, 2019 at Shapeshifters Cinema



Summer Solstice Pop-up / Guillermo Galindo live webcast / Sunday, June 21st
We have been working behind the scenes to re-configure the model of how we plan to continue operating, given the circumstances of the current state of the world. Visit us on Sunday, June 21st for a special popup event followed by a live performance streamed online. Read the announcement

Thank you to all of our donors
We rely on individual donations to support artists and operate our cinema. We are immensely grateful for their contributions. View the list of donors

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