28th Ji.hlava International Documentary Film Festival

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director: Jan Švankmajer
original title: Kunstkamera
country: Czech Republic
year: 2022
running time: 113 min.


According to Jan Švankmajer, museum exhibits are ordered rationally, while the Kunstcamera is an irrational showcase. This holds true also for this film with which the leading Czech surrealist personality decides to finish his cinema career and his close cooperation with the producer Jaromír Kallista. Very playfully, he approaches works of art, curiosities and everyday objects that he and his wife Eva had assembled over many decades inside a former Renaissance granary in the Bohemian village of Horní Staňkov. These immobile objects come to life thanks to Švankmajer’s traditional methods of composition and Antonio Vivaldi’s music. Dalí, Štýrský, Toyen, dog’s food bowl and the creaking floor all create an organic whole, stirring imagination and creative passion.

“I have always been fascinated by the image of Rudolph II’s Kunstcamera. Not necessarily by the real art treasures included in the Emperor’s collection, but by the non-artistic, sometimes even lowly portions of objects, artefacts and other curiosities that used to be its part.” Jan Švankmajer

Source: https://program.lfs.cz/detail/?film=The-Kunstcamera


Jan Švankmajer (b. 1934) is a Czech filmmaker, animator and visual artist, a leading figure of the famed Prague Surrealist Group. He stepped into the world of cinema during the 1960s. In his short films, and since 1988 also fiction features frequently screened at international festivals, he has been frequently combining acting, puppet play and animation in a unique way.

more about film

director: Jan Švankmajer
producer: Jaromír Kallista, Pavla Kallistová
script: Jan Švankmajer
photography: Jan Růžička, Adam Oĺha
editing: Jan Daňhel
music: Antonio Vivaldi
sound: Ivo Špalj
Ministerstvo kultury
Fond kinematografie
Město Jihlava
Kraj Vysočina
Creative Europe Media
Česká televize
Český rozhlas