Uncompromising Art of Happsoc by Stano Filko
Documentary film featuring Slovak artist Stano Filko and the concept of Happsoc, or Happy Society that he coined together with Zita Kostrova and Alex Mlynarcik in 1965. When Stano Filko emigrated from the communist Czechoslovakia in 1981, I was just finishing my film studies, but I was completely blown away by his Happsoc Manifesto, that I read in his art catalogue I had pinched from my schoolmate as a blacklisted literature of an enormous value. It was absolutely unthinkable to make a movie about Happsoc until after 1989, when the democracy returned to Slovakia, together with Stano Filko himself. I contacted him and we decided to shoot during one week in his studio over the Bratislava city a movie that is an homage to the concept that have intrigued me for decades and served him as a centerpiece of his artistic life. When I asked him about the meaning of his life, he said: “Conditions for my work were never the best or the worst, because I don’t create, I have it as my inner fanatic duty.”
By watching this movie you will explore the concept of Happsoc, as the uncompromising, anti-political, anti-diplomatic, anti-militaristic, anti petty bourgeois, absolute, free, naked, unstylized art.
Creation and production of this movie is also featured in my textbook “Preparing and Scriptwriting Documentary Films,” where I analyze the creative and production processes of the documentary film genre for the film students.
If you enjoyed the movie Happsoc, you may as well like another documentary about the Slovak art scene From the Basement.