Stano Filko

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Born June 15, 1937(1937-06-15)
Veľká Hradná, Czechoslovakia (now Slovakia)
Died October 23, 2015(2015-10-23) (aged 78)
Bratislava, Slovakia
Collections Art museums in Slovakia (Web umenia), Kontakt (Vienna), Nedbalka (Bratislava), Artandconcept Gallery (Prague)
Web CEAD, abArt, Artyčok TV, Wikipedia-SK
Filko in c1967. Source.

Stano Filko (1937, Veľká Hradná - 2015, Bratislava) was a key figure in the Slovak avant-garde, associated primarily with environment, installation, happening, and action. He began his studies at the School of Applied Arts in Bratislava (1956-59) and later studied Monumental Painting at the Academy of Arts, Bratislava (Prof. Milly and Prof. Matejka, 1960-65). He emigrated from Czechoslovakia in 1981 to West Germany and the following year further to the United States. In 1990 he returned to Bratislava.



Filko began his artistic practice as a critique of modernist painting, appropriating maps as ready-made canvases and created work influenced by Concrete and Constructivist artists in the mid-1960s. His intricate visual systems created diagrams from everyday objects that were rich in symbolic meaning.

Filko was included in the 1968 exhibition Nová citlivost [New Sensibility], which was a key, large-scale public exhibition of neo-constructivist work in Czechoslovakia that took place around the time of the Prague Spring (a short-lived period of reform during the spring of 1968). Nová citlivost was first presented in Brno, Karlovy Vary, and then at the Mánes gallery in Prague during the period of normalization that followed the August 1968 Soviet suppression of the Prague Spring. Following this period, strict censorship laws were implemented, resulting in the widespread repression of art and development of underground art movements throughout the 1970s. Filko's piece in Nová citlivost, titled A Room of Love (1965–66), presented relationships between objects and their users. The installation with a mirrored floor supported two beds, each covered with sheets bearing a Latin cross. An inflatable mattress covered one of the beds and a girl sat on the other.

In his later series of conceptual statements, Asociácie [Association] (1968–69), Filko's interest in transcendental philosophy, cosmology, and metaphysics—which could be seen as a response to the Leninist material ideology—was evident in his offset prints that mapped symbolic images and words. Many works in Association resemble calligrams—for example, one work parsed the linguistic relationship between the words "universe", "earth", "fire", "water", and "air" by organizing each word within a diagram written in Czech, German, Spanish, French, and Latin.

Filko was also a key figure in Slovak Actionism. In 1965, he wrote "Manifesto of 'HAPPSOC' (Theory of Anonymity)" with theoretician Zita Kostrová and fellow artist Alex Mlynárčik—who was in dialogue with the Paris-based Nouveau Réalisme group. The tongue-in-cheek name was short for "happy society", or "happening" and "society", or "happy socialism". The HAPPSOC group questioned the status of artistic practice as autonomous and created work that intervened in everyday life. The manifesto showed the writers' openness to perceiving reality as a work of art, declaring all of Bratislava as a Happening from 2-8 May 1965, in HAPPSOC 1. (Source)

(To be expanded.)


Happsoc, dir. Kvetoslav Hečko, Slovak Television, 1996, 26 min.
Documentary film/homage. In Slovak with English subtitles. Source.

Works (selection)[edit]


Solo exhibitions
  • Obrazy — Grafiky, Kultúrny dom, Bánovce nad Bebravou, 1958.
  • Obrazy, Reduta, Bratislava, 1962.
  • Stano Filko. Obydlí současnosti a skutečnosti, Galerie na Karlove náměstí, Prague, 3 Feb - 5 Mar 1967. Curated by Zdeněk Felix.
  • Grafika, Galéria Václava Špály, Prague, 1967.
  • Stanislav Filko, Environnement universel 1966-1967 und grafik, Galerie Ursula Wendtorf-Kunstverein, Oldenburg-Düsseldorf, 1969.
  • with Miloš Laky and Ján Zavarský, Biely priestor v bielom priestore, Dům umění, Brno, 1973.
  • with Miloš Laky and Ján Zavarský, Fiatal muvészek klubja, Budapest, 1977.
  • Stanislav Filko, Emotion-1977, Galeria LDK Labirynt, Lublin, 1978.
  • Stano Filko, Transcendencja 1978, Galeria GN ZPAF, Gdańsk, Mar 1979.
  • Stanislav Filko. Transcendencia I.-II. 1978-1979, Mala galeria PSP - ZPAF, Plac Zamkowy, Warsaw, 1980.
  • Stano Filko. Exhibit of Painting, North Arlinghton Public Library, North Arlinghton, New Jersey, 1984.
  • FYLKO. Special Exhibit of Recent Work 1983-1985, P.S.1 – The Institute for Art and Urban Resources, Long Island City, New York, 1986.
  • Stano Fylko,The Donnell Library Center, New York City, 1987.
  • Stano Filko - Výber z diela. I. Červená energia (cyklus Sondy), Slovak National Gallery, Bratislava, 1993.
  • Výber z troch energií, Mánes, Prague, 1994.
  • Výber z tvorby (Červená biologická energia, 3. dimenzia, Modrá kozmologická energia, 4. dimenzia, Biela metafyzická energia, 5. dimenzia), Slovak National Gallery, Zámok Zvolen, 1994.
  • Piata dimenzia, Galéria Cypriána Majerníka, Bratislava, 1995.
  • Galéria Tatrasoft, Bratislava, 1996.
  • with Boris Ondreička, Spolocnekazdysam, Stürzerova cukráren, Bratislava, 1997. Fourth annual exhibition of SCCA. [1]
  • Egoq, Východoslovenská galéria, Košice, 2000.
  • Stanislav Filko. Šeherezada - Žena - Venuša, Galéria Slovenská sporiteľňa, Banská Bystrica, 2001.
  • with Miloš Laky and Ján Zavarský, Biely priestor v bielom priestore, Hungarian Cultural Institute, Bratislava, 2001. [2]
  • Stano Filko, Sonda egoq 1937-2037 Geminiy, Galéria Slovenská sporiteľňa, Bratislava, 2003. Curated by Michal Murin. Poster, Flyer, Booklet.
  • Fiylkontemplaciakcieq, sonda 1950-1969, sonda 1971-1984, State Gallery, Banská Bystrica, 2003.
  • Up 300000 km/s, tranzit workshops, Bratislava, 2005. Curated by Vít Havránek and Boris Ondreička. [3]
  • Priáda – piata – štvrtá – d (dimenzia), Slovak Institute, Prague, 2008.
  • Filkova archa a oltáre súčasnosti, Bratislava City Gallery, Bratislava, 25 Sep - 26 Oct 2008. Curated by Ivan Jančár.
  • Mapy ženy rakety, Linea Gallery, Bratislava, 7 Mar - 25 May 2011. Curated by Michal Murin. [4] [5]
  • Tranzscendenteaoq 5.4.3.d = metodika = inteligenteaoq, Galerie Emanuel Layr, Vienna, 2012.
  • Erupekcia - orgiazmus - orgazmus - yang - jin = slnkomesiac - in like - love - entita - exist - beingsf - hermafrodit každému podľa svojich možností a schopností - v - in - 5.4.3.d - pre život singular truths všetkých ľudí na tejto zemeguli -tranzscendencie - v - in - existencii - len v 3.d., amt_project, Bratislava, 24 Mar - 29 Jun 2012.
  • Stano Filko – Biela ako ontologický priestor a začiatok všetkého, Nedbalka Gallery, Bratislava, 2012.
  • Biela ontológia transcendencia fyzika, Art Capital Gallery, Bratislava, 27 Oct - 5 Nov 2012. Curated by Mira Keratová. [6] [7]
  • Stano Filko. Obaly, Linea Gallery, Bratislava, 24 Feb - 31 May 2015. Curated by Aurel Hrabušický.
  • Stano Filko: 5.D., Plato, Ostrava, 28 May - 30 Aug 2015. Curated by Marek Pokorný.
  • Filko - Fylko - Phylko, Zachęta - National Gallery of Art, Warsaw, 2 Jun - 16 Aug 2015. Curated by Lucia Gregorová Stachová and Joanna Kordjak. Brochure.
  • Poézia o priestore – kozme, Slovak National Gallery, Bratislava, 24 Jun - 25 Sep 2016. Curated by Lucia Gregorová Stach and Aurel Hrabušický.
  • Stano Filko: Reality of Cosmos, The Mayor Gallery, London, 12 Sep - 27 Oct 2017. Photo documentation.
  • Stano Filko: From Earth to Pluto, SODA Gallery, Bratislava, 15 Dec 2017-26 Jan 2018. Curated by Nina Vrbanová.
Group exhibitions

Catalogues and monographs[edit]

  • Stano Filko - Obydlí 1966 (Skutečnosti - současnosti), 1967, [6] pp. With text by Zdeněk Felix. [8]
  • Stanislav Filko: Environment universel 1966-1967, Oldenburg: Galerie Ursula Wendtorf, [1968], [10] pp. With text by Jürgen Weichardt. (German)/(French)/(English)
  • Stano Filko: Asociácie, [Bratislava], [1968-69], [17] leaves. [9] (Slovak)
  • Stano Filko: II., 1965-69. Tvorba. Works-Creations. Werk-Schaffung. Ouvrages, intro. Pierre Restany, Bratislava: A-Press, 1970, [158] pp. Documents Filko's happenings and environmental works of the late 1960s. [10] (Slovak)/(English)/(French)/(German)
  • Stano Filko: Transcendencja 1978, Gdańsk: Galeria GN, 1979, [20] pp. [11] (Polish)/(English)
  • Stano Filko: Białe przestrzenie. Prace z lat 1973-1978, Łódź: Galeria Wschodnia, 1985, [6] pp. With text by Grzegorz Sztabiński. [12] (Polish)
  • Stano Filko: Sonda Egoq 1937 - 2037 (Geminiy), Bratislava: rgb, 2003, [6] pp. With text by Michal Murin. (Slovak)/(English)/(German) [13]
  • Metafyzicko- ontologicko- nadčasovo- absolútna- transcendencia, Prague: PPF Art, 2008, [32] pp. With texts by Fedor Blaščák and VB. (Slovak),(Czech) [14]
  • Stano Filko. Filkova archa a oltáre súčasnosti / Filko's Arch and the Altars of Presence, Bratislava: Galéria mesta Bratislavy, 2008, 34 pp. With text by Ivan Jančár. [15] (Slovak)/(English)
  • Stano Filko. Mapy ženy rakety, Bratislava: Linea Gallery, 2011, [22] pp. With text by Michal Murin. (Slovak)
  • Stano Filko – Biela ako ontologický priestor a začiatok všetkého, Bratislava: Calder, 2012, 86 pp. With text by Zsófia Kiss-Szemán. [16] (Slovak)
  • Stano Filko: Poézia o priestore - kozme / Poetry on Space - Cosmos, eds. Lucia Gregorová Stach and Aurel Hrabušický, Bratislava: Slovak National Gallery, 2016, 97 pp. (Slovak)/(English)
  • Stano Filko 1, eds. Lucia Gregorová Stach and Aurel Hrabušický, Bratislava: Slovak National Gallery, 2018, 440 pp. Excerpt. [17] [18]. Review: Jablonská (Artalk). (Slovak)/(English)

Artist's books[edit]

  • with Miloš Laky and Ján Zavarský, Biely priestor v bielom priestore / A White Space in a White Space / Unespace blanc dans l'espace blanc / Weiser raum im Weisen raum, [c1974], [4+16] folded leaves. (Slovak)/(English)/(French)/(German)
  • Emócia/L’émotion/Emotion, 1977. Text-art.
  • Transcendentálna meditácia 1980: text-art / Meditation transcendental 1980 / Transzendentale Meditation 1980, [1980], [1] folded leaf. (Slovak)/(German)/(English)/(French)



See also catalogues and monographs.

See also[edit]