curator: Dorotea Fotivec Očić
Stano Filko (1937, Veľká Hradná – 2015), Bratislava) is one of the key figures of the Slovak neo- avant-garde. As part of the "Artist on Vacation 2022" by Valamar project, the artist will be presented for the first time in Croatia at a solo exhibition.
Within former Czechoslovakia, Stano Filko is one of the pioneers of spatial installations, assemblages, collages, and happenings, and his extensive work includes conceptual art, land art and other contemporary expressions. The experience of two clinical deaths (a fall in a mine and an electric shock) profoundly affected his artistic creation. He placed his opus in a detailed and elaborate symbolic system of ideas based on colours, chakras and ontological concepts. This system is also the main code for understanding his works. His works can be divided into five dimensions and 12 chakras. Red represents biological space, works related to biology and eroticism (Venus/Scheherazade) and works such as spatial installations from the Universal Environment series. The green colour represents the socio-political space and works from the Happsoc series. White is an ontological space represented by works from the series White Space. The blue colour represents the cosmic space where it talks about the universe, the utopian and physical distance from Earth, the space race of the USSR, the United States, and the moon landing. Indigo/black space marks the subject, the ego, and it is the centre of his system.
With the art theorist Zita Kostrová and artist Alex Mlynárčik in 1965, he created the HAPPSOC manifesto (happy socialism) through which reality is set as a work of art – the whole of Bratislava and the celebration of the First May 1965 holiday was declared a happening.
In the late '60s, his interest turned to transcendental philosophy and cosmology. The series of photographs entitled Transcendency, 1978 – 1979, includes the evolution of the theoretical and practical concept of White Space in White Space, 1973 – 1974, which he developed with Miloš Laky and Ján Zavarský. In Transcendency, Filko intervened in black-and-white or gold-toned photographs by cutting out the heads of persons in the shape of a circle or square or covering them, painting them with white tempera.
He emigrated to West Germany in 1981 and the United States in 1982. He returned to Bratislava in 1990.
Selected works from the Marinko Sudac Collection will show a cross-section of various phases of Stan Filko's creation and system, including anthological series of works such as Happsoc, Transcendence, White Space in White Space, Maps, Rockets, etc. in the media of spatial installations, objects, conceptual works, collages and photographs.