Window to the VVP AVU Video Archive

Video recording of a visit by Jiří Ševčík, Boris Ondreička and Jesper Alvaer in the no longer existing “studio-archive-object-environment-tomb” of the artist Stano Filko in Snežienková street in Bratislava, 2003.
Following people appear in the video: the artist Stano Filko (1937 – 2015), the artist, musician and curator Boris Ondreička (1969) and the artist Jesper Alvaer (1973). Author of the video is an art critic, curator and professor Jiří Ševčík (1940).

Camera: Jiří Ševčík
Digitization: Sláva Sobotovičová, VVP AVU
The video was shot on miniDV.
Thanks to Jiří Ševčík for contribution of this video to VVP AVU videoarchive.

From the Process of Self-sublimation
To the Project of the Sublime

The following words constitute an excerpt
from (an unfinished) text
that draws from my work
with, on and in relation to Stano Filko,
since 1997,
which we, Vít Havránek and I, took up
in 2003
and we might never stop.

The work of STANO FILKO
found its most complex embodiment in his Merzbau,
a studio-archive-object-environment-tomb, now abandoned,
at Snežienková street in Bratislava, Czechoslovakia / Slovakia.
Together with Vít Havránek, we consider the media memory of Snežienková
(but surely also with others
who saw it)
to be the widest-open gate leading to a possible interpretation
of his subjective cosmology.
All of its nuances were gathered
(and systematized by him)
jointly only here.

At this place, Filko
used to spend most of his time,
in the last third of his life.

Right at the beginning
I find it symptomatically important to mention,
that the widest-open gate into FILKO
actually doesn’t exist anymore.

My proposal of possible starting points of his reading
comes from the fusion of personal hearing of
(listening, and debating
{also by the house and elsewhere} /
looking, observing)
his aims
and our interpersonal exchange.

I am trying to judge critically
what I believe
FILKO meant
whenever he proclaimed something
(often in a form of a manifest, appropriation,
eclectic-speculative composites)
with the help of anything
that is available to my analysis and interpretation
even without him.

I am identifying him
(employing the premises pontis asinōrum)
with networked global
authorial-institutional production
(definitely not just the fine art).
Therefore, I am trying to cumulate a set of interdisciplinary arguments
(with ties to the fragments
of the wide range of his interests)
based on a particular form of epistemological anarchism.

Between that
which we think
and that which we say
is often (as a rule) an unbridgeable gap
– that’s also why the same way I review him
I control myself.
I act with an honest intention
to distance myself from him as little as possible
(by projecting the visions
of my dimensions onto him).
In short, I focus, above all, on the (clarifying) hermeneutics
of only some of the motivations / motivities, cognitions and expressions
of the other two decades
of his self-re-evaluating processualities
I consider determining and effective.

In 1997, FILKO and I established an art meta-entity called FILKONDREICKA
an in the following years, we created a few sizable projects.
Since then, I have been also facilitating his work
in the global institutional context of art
(to the extent I was capable
to manage his never-ceasing expansiveness).
Together with Vít Havránek, we realised, as curators,
(probably) his greatest project ever
—„Up 300000 km/s“ (2005).
Together with Fedor Blaščák, we designed
the only retrospective (so far) of Miloš Laky (2010),
which included also a spacious excursion
into Malevich-Klein-like “White Space in White Space”
(the emblematic collaboration of FILKO with Laky and Ján Zavarský
of the first half of the 1970s,
the program of which FILKO legitimately advanced for the whole of his life)
– both taking place in tranzit gallery in Bratislava.
With Vít Havránek, we then designed
and installed the largest presentation of “White Space in White Space”
in Meštrović Pavilion in Zagreb
as a part of the exhibition “My sweet little lamb
(Everything we see could also be otherwise)”
curated by WHW (2017),
and other things.

Today, I would say
that our debates are to be understood as the discourse of idealistic nihilism
(the “4th” and “higher dimensions” of FILKO
– a path to emptiness, the majestic decay of ego) with materialist nihilism
(with the “3rd dimension” of me
– a path from emptiness, the composition of ego)
– ontologically, philosophically, politically,
(on the other halfway to each other)
we shared the rebellious nihilism.
Our common interest in a kind of all-encompassment of the extendedness of humanity
was in his case defined by the belief in spiritual emanations and reincarnation
and, in my case, by the inclination towards prostheticism of transhumanism.

One of the ways
of coping with the unavoidable conflict between me
and the most of the unbearable pettinesses of the pluralities of naked life
– labelled spherologically by FILKO
also as the “three-dimensional” fields, zones and its entrails
– which he internalised figuratively
through “energies” or (alternatively) “chakras”
(using his pseudo-terminology),
is the ontological sublimation outwards /
above the suffocating triviality of the humane world
– which, again, FILKO marked as the “4th”
and higher “dimensions”
(through the Aristotelian Empyrean
generously even further and deeper).
The “1st” and the “2nd dimension”
are not part of his system.
Regarding the “2nd dimension”,
he suggested it only descriptively,
and he never mentioned the “1st dimension”
(the theoretical point – lacking any width, length, height and movement)
even though he reflected upon
the black hole
(understood by him as the entrance to a parallel universe)
and in his drawings, he used the related perforation.
As the “Blackhole”, he labelled
even the latrine at Snežienková street
or a vent
during a solo project in tranzit at Zlaté piesky.
With regard to the black 1st dimension,
(I don’t mean FILKO’s “dimensions”
but just the ordinary mathematics)
it is necessary to mention
that it doesn’t refer to his “ego-black”
(I will get back to it later).
I repeat: in FILKO’s understanding, the never-mentioned “1st dimension” is a perforation, a hole…
meaning that it cannot be categorised as a colour.

In the case of spherology, I refer to the famous concept by Peter Sloterdijk as proposed in his Spheres trilogy
that speaks also about such places of co-existence
that are overlooked, forgotten or taken for granted,
that express an impossible ontological desire to return to the comfort of the womb
(that FILKO’s wishful anabasis into his “birthplace”…)
that we systematically try to reconstruct with the help of sciences, ideologies and religions.

The sublimation
is one of the modes of critical distance
(necessary when a catharsis is to be achieved /
Catharsis = release and purification)
and magnanimity.
This way
(from the bird’s eye view /
to be critical-minded // to take things with a grain of salt ///
from person to personality),
one can understand more responsibly the dynamics of origins,
meanings and relations.

FILKO later
sorted these dynamics into numerities, quotients, ratios,
into marks, signs and symbols
(from typology, logos
to typography, graphos)
pointing to the singularity.
It was a sort of contemporary form of the process
of the antic henosis
– unification with, becoming One.

For him, anything “higher” was at once
sensorimotoric, qualitative
(and consequently quantified),
aesthetic, avant-garde.
His “higher”
(but also “bigger”)
was distinctly ethical
– even universalistically moralising.
Even though his “higher”
(the “higher” the “purer”,
to the spacelessness, extracorporeality, impersonality, untimeliness,
FILKO’s ladders {and charts},
or rigorously purified “White spaces”…)
heroically contemplated as well the origins
senses / meanings and relations (links),
but it ignored laboratorily the mundane reality.
This way, he was taking care of non-violableness of his own essentiality (esse), absoluteness,
universality, totality.
As he himself was saying,
he wasn’t “at all interested”
in the “3rd dimension”,
which (in a simplified manner) referred to the physiological and social, political ordinariness.
He was taking interest in the earthly culture only in the simplest manner.
He (and his companions) appropriated it declaratively and depleted it
already in the mid-1960s
– that is, even time-wise
he was leaving it as if behind, under himself or aside.
He considered it to be inferior (though despotic)
part of nature
of supra-planetary spreadability.
Only rarely
(in comparison to me)
he mentioned infra;
there was only the exalted “ultra”, “super” and “hyper”.

One of the unavoidabilities of the sublimation
is the research, ordering of that which exists (and is set)
and proposing new, higher order, control.
It has to be done in concurrence (“federation”)
with reinforcing of one’s own basis of the point of departure, orientation,
the organisation of reflection.

FILKO also acted in this spirit,
but (I repeat) without any pragmatic consideration
of the capacities (of situation and dispositions) of the given context.
He opted rather for the strategy of an extraterritoriality of sorts,
of a placeholder cosmo-escapism
(from our perspective)
as well as of extra-temporality or contra-temporality
(a systematic fight against temporality).
To the aforementioned social biotope
(that crawls about and out of the tension of the singularity of a normal / natural mammal
through his plural normative / cultural roles),
he related as if to the theatre performance
in the potentiality of Kenneth Burke’s “Life is not like a drama. Life is a drama.”
or Truffaut’s “mise-en-scène”
– meaning the modern versions of Theatrum Mundi.
He was trying to be its scriptwriter, director,
stage designer (engineer, architect)
and actor
(I have in mind also the “HAPPSOC” series,
“Universal, Polyphonic environments”
and other space-object-subject-action
prospects and projects).

The order is at the root of both words
– trying to be in order and ordering
(… to be in order and to be ordered).
The order is, as well, the true meaning of the word cosmos
and the literary starting point of both ecology (logos) and economy (nomos).

The setting of the “higher” principle
(of cosmology)
could be mainly seen in FILKO’s work
of the last decades of never-ceasing retrospection,
rebuilding, reshaping, (language-oriented) actualisation
in the aspiration of the corrective self-musealisation.
He was redrawing, honing
his multi-frequency, categorisational schemes.
Indeed, there was no creation
– only reshaping.
He innovated in diligent attitude towards bodily post-mortality /
preservation of coherent mortality
of his own gnoseological message.

One can say
that he supplied every object with a tag
to prevent leaving behind a mere Kunstkabinett
full of obscure, unidentifiable objects.

Therefore, this tidying up didn’t mean reduction.
The artwork got duplicated.
A context with / above a context appeared
– which makes my account an interpretation of an interpretation
– only that it is my interpretation of his interpretation
(in both cases: multiple efforts
to translated from an exclusive language
to an exclusive language).
His order meant also an insight, overview,
… from lucidity to translucence…
understanding, control /
manipulation, coping,
(energic peace, hygiene, defence, proving right…)
and their subsequent communicativeness.

We have a full right to consider FILKO’s cryptic practice of establishing patterns
to be the most significant idea of his work
– the whole universe’s rule,
the focal point in which he situated himself /
whose centre he constituted.

Even though the circuits of his art thought
pulsated outside the ordinary vocabulary and its metrics,
he used to explain it in the Lettrist fashion
in the sense of acuteness of the encounters of the second kind
– with common audiences.
He re-labelled his artworks synchronously chromatically,
numerically (ranges, scales)
while coding them meta-linguistically / as a hypertext.
He used acronymic suffixes (relative to propositions)
such as “Q” (quotient),
“D” (dimensions),
“E” (emotion),
“I” (intelligence)
and so on.
He reconstituted them brutally
by adding (neo-notional) annotations
on the sides but also right in the middle.
He used thick markers and pen to redraw
as if it was an analogue computer.
“Y” (“hard i” in Slovak) referred to the emotional compression of gnomes,
the hard core of a proposition.

Since the establishment of fixed principles
applied also to the speculations surrounding the primordium
(and what’s more, even “before the Big Bang”,
and what’s even more, from the cradles of his Catholic upbringing),
he was prone to incorporate and conspire into it
the most rudimentary traditionalisms
as well as carnal vulgarities.
I believe
that even the tense relationship of his robust, hedonistic corporeality
with the idealist-autonomist world-view
(internal clash of mind and body)
– and their collision with the external politically-correct existence
(first pseudo-socialist
and then proto-capitalist)
are to be understood as elementary
in any understanding of the complexities of his statements.

In the ambition of quantification
(in our view unquantifiable),
his combinatory system
bore also a formal resemblance
to the analytical-exegetical Bamidbar (Book of Numbers)
and to the hierarchical abstraction of Dan H. Ballard
– to the causality of analogical pairing with conceptual blending.
Snežienková street could then be even
a computing cloud.

He catalogued his words with the help of spontaneous administrative tools
into thematic folders distinguished by colours.
Subsequently and concurrently, he re-/ordered individual segments of his work
and its placement in the rooms at Snežienková street
(like sorting the content of a computer desktop into folders and subfolders).
He furnished the rooms with info-orientation (envirographic) separately through appropriation
and interconnected them into inseparably total (utopic, poetic) narrative
of the house-sculpture-scenography.

In 2006, there were:
roofed dooryard,
the yard (later completely roofed as well),
5 surface-level rooms (dedicated to red, orange-yellow, green, black,
silver-gold-white-transparent colours),
one above-ground room (dedicated to blue colour)
and a flat zinc roof
(that gradually covered even the yard).

That substantial translation of memory
(a sort of Midrash, linguistic
as well as non-verbal, spatial,
Snežienková street could then be outright beth Midrash
– a house of research, study, learning)
was becoming a reason for repeated revision,
for the alternation of the one who enters
(change of the changing one, correlation).
He created variants
(from different angles of view)
in order to achieve responsible plasticity of a proposition.
In this regard, FILKO’s iconoclasm was often brutal
He acted so with the intention to confirm the consistency
of their (ever) new and possible position, function, unification,
(by which I mean the preservation of the balance of speed racer,
or, to put it better,
– the movement of an astronaut in the state of weightlessness
and not the stasis),
objectification, substantialisation.
However, he reconstituted the balance in the properties of amoeba
– he considered
all the objects, fragments in it,
to be modular though with a change in denotation.

So if I speak about making of the register grid
I don’t mean anything mechanical and forever constant
– it is rather the establishing sort of springy mesh.
FILKO understood art with the phenomenological generality
– as an infinite neuroplastic absorptive matter,
a pan-disciplinary infrastructure.
This is one of the reasons why a documentation of his work
meant always something like recording (in a Heraclitan way)
only a partial, ephemeral,
momentary status quo of a flow
(or a tsunami).
It means that providing a proof today
isn’t just a question of reconstructing the object
but the interpretation of a deduction of an autobiographical subject.
The research, therefore, doesn’t require just
to make clear
what errors does FILKO make,
whether he is not (actually) lying
but if so
– then why,
to what purpose.
We can eliminate a search for irony
– he considered it to be “the harmful 3. D.”.
FILKO’s process of the comprehensively reversible re-signing
then negates a potential application of a linear,
chronological ordering /
understanding of his work.

FILKO returned to Snežienková street
after he had emigrated to Germany and United States (1981-1990);
back then, he started slowly
to reshape it.

He moved the content (or rather the volume) of this house,
formerly a cottage situated in an allotment garden,
which he owned (according to him) since 1965,
silently to the parent’s estate
(his birthplace)
in the village of Veľká Hradná
(some 150 kilometres north of Bratislava)
at the turn of 2011/12.
He did so in a maximalist faith
that he will find means
to build, in a Pushkin-like fashion, an indestructible museal / mausoleum-like hangar
of a size 100 x 50 metres,
with a roof fully shining into the cosmos.
But he managed only to lay the large foundation with concrete
and take out a few supporting pillars.
The multifunctional building in Veľká Hradná
was to be the next shift
(but also a return to the aforementioned primordium)
a deepening, synchronisation of his pan-phonic work
(“from 12 to 18 chakras”).
He talked about the planned establishing
of the consequent self-historicising periods (“clones”)
from “before Hradná” to “after Snežienková street”:
The rebuilding at the Snežienková street was drawing from the adaptation of the given conditions of the place
while building in Hradná was supposed to be the realisation of “the extract essence par excellence”.
He called it also “the Ark”
– identifying himself with Noah, not as the apocalyptical saviour
but as the New one
– the focusing, defining and dividing one.
We can find also another biblical meaning in “the Ark”
– the Ark of the Covenant,
which would, in this case, contain FILKO’s Eighteen Commandments.

The roots of FILKO’s ecstatic auto-retrospective after coming back from abroad
are to be found in a trauma
– after taking part in documenta VII (1982) in Kassel,
which, understandably, made him believe in his career’s advancement
in the free world,
he could find a place for himself
in the neoliberal New York
and the borderline (but also ethnically emancipatory) transformation taking place at home
{or “Slovakoczechia”,
as FILKO used to revise the name},
after the change in 1989
(which he dived into with euphoria and without preparation),
again, forced everyone to seek or determine one’s own position
(in many cases entirely new, right from the scratch,
in a democracy without substance).
When this essay was published,
the building at Snežienková was still standing, emptied out,
in a substantiated dystopia
that because of its lucrative location
it shall be replaced by a normal urban villa at some point.
In one (hierarchically the resulting one) of the six interiors,
in the “white-silver-gold-transparent” one
(the most absolute, metaphysical,
Transcendental one),
he even place a cenotaph for his cremation ashes.

There is another condition of the sublimation:
not to be anchored by one belief, dogma, truth, reasonability, utility,
reality, correctness…

This is one of the reasons why FILKO created syncretic compositenesses
out of dimensions, agents and denominators of religions, myths, mysticism
{FILKO’s starting point was the locally most established, Catholic upbringing},
Greek with Buddhism or Hinduism, European paganism,
as if he was following up non-linearly
lingua franca, the Mediterranean exchange concept of multiculturality),
sciences (he was interested in the physics, above all), science fiction,
popular wisdom and folk (including urban and media) culture.
He did so in a form of a well-grounded parallel
to the continuity of the epistemological anarchism of Paul Feyerabend (unbeknownst to him):
“… because there is no fixed scientific method,
it is best to have an ‘anything goes’ attitude toward methodologies…”
“… it is not possible to come up with an unambiguous way
to distinguish science from religion, magic,
or mythology…”.
(just like Feyerabend
or one of his exceptional sources, Michael Polanyi)
anharmonically took up the heritage of Horace’s epistolary Epistles:
“… (to be) addicted to swear implicitly to the ipse-dixits of no particular master,
wherever the weather drives me,
I am carried a guest…”,
where he refuses to be loyal to any authoritative dominance,
and he devotes himself exclusively to the science~nature
(arts, in his case)
drawing from the postulate of unique subjectivity.
Nullius in verba is also the motto of Royal Society in London
(and it has been since 1660).

He used to depict a certain discotism
(an outward change
without any inner manifestation)
in a form of “chakric” diagrams
(another time, he ordered them horizontally
in a form of tables or textual rotational symmetries,
– which used to find also various artefactual extensions,
let’s recall at least the open grill in the yard at Snežienková street
where he barbecued mostly pork meat
= a profane combination of Buddhism and Paganism),
as well as in the laying of the individual mesophases of his house
(by a three-dimensional installation of existing objects,
the design turned impractical and art turned practical
in one space, and by interconnecting the rooms
= the energetic, vibration fields)
in a certain liquidity.
One theme
(level, class, kinetic layer
or even a single drawing…)
turned to another
molecularly, metonymically,
or rather synecdochally maybe.
Snežienková teemed with active synaptic interconnectivity,
like Endless House
– the elastic concept of Frederick Kiesler,
in which he materialised his Manifesto of Correalism.
He used to place one object into multiple categories at once
– following the heterogeneity of its inner structure
based on an immanent objective context:
for example (say),
the figure of an astronaut
– he situated it in the “bodily red 3rd dimension”
and at the same time in the “cosmic blue 4th dimension” (the associative one)
and in the “ego” black fluid dimension,
He called the lower “black” dimension (the space between the “4th and 5th dimension”) also “black-indigo”
– the indigo of carbon paper
(which, besides the dark-blue one, used to be also black)
is the replication.
In the case of the higher “black” (“5th dimension”), he distinguished
the “black-matter” and “black-energy”.
The highest one
(the before-Big-Bang one but also before the absolute “none”)
was the “black-white (but not grey)”.
Even though his full-colour spectrum draws the attention of our senses
– FILKO dedicated most of his space (and time…) to the “black”
(to the transformations of ego / himself).

We can say
that the metonymy was instrumentalised
also by FILKO’s starting point in conceptualising of his own astrological sign “Gemini”
(which he later extended to “Trimini”
not unlike the ecumenical constitution of the Holy Trinity).
His behaviour reminded also of the schizo-oriented hypothesis
of the multi-source bicameralism of Julian Jaynes.

Yes, it is very unusual
That the concepts flirt promiscuously between the disciplines
and the common chatter uses the established expressions
irrespective of their true meaning,
and yet
– it still spontaneously secures the mutual understanding.

FILKO expanded the meaning of “chakras”(plexes)
from the individual (neurological) soma
to the whole apparatus of the ordering of reality
– not just the civilizing one
but also the one that includes everything organic and inorganic
(just like Polanyi transferred the concept of spontaneous order
from seeing, scientific methods and Gestalt psychology
to the self-organisation of free society
or just like Jeremy England today,
with his provocative thermodynamic theory of the origin and evolution of life,
challenges the difference between organic and inorganic
putting accent on the photosynthesis
– enlightenment).
Although just like in the case of the mythopoetic cosmogenesis of Sefer Yetzirah,
meaning Kabbalah
(embodied in the attributes,
emissions of the astral golem Adam Kadmon…)
FILKO actually generalised and deanthropomorphized retroactively these systems
(grammatised and intellectualised,
so that they can represent the (already) networked nature without the additional burden
and en bloc.
It means that his authentic expansiveness
knew no limits;
not even between the work on paper and in space…
He considered everything to be an equally describable interface.

Such an abstracted compound
leaves the competing forms in a certain state of neurosis.
On top of that, it got multiplied also by the anxiety of obscurity
between the realisable and realised,
metaphorically transferred and factually explicit.
This sublimates then in the doubts,
normative questioning of the prosaic audience,
which perceives in it multiple logical contradictions.
FILKO didn’t.

The sublimation,
as reflected also by the location of FILKO’s house
on the front hillside of Koliba
his house could actually be the shed of the spiritual shepherd
– the descendant of Zarathustra),
on the southernmost flank of Carpathian Mountains,
under its late-modern TV tower / transmitter Kamzík
(FILKO considered this building,
situated above the peak of his residence,
to be a combination of a masculine and feminine totem),
on one of the highest spots in Bratislava,
from whence one can see Austrian Alps,
in the 1970s only through the invisible Iron Curtain,
crossed freely only by birds…
(it can be said, in many regards, that FILKO’s Snežienková
was also a nest or a columbarium),
the existing genius of Snežienková, regarding its character, involved
topos both urban and rural
as well as brutally natural,
could lead us back to Jonathan Swift’s Laputa
– floating utopia /
island (isola-e), the city of scientists.
For FILKO, the art was such a grand space
– the operation of intersubjective belonging and fellowship,
(no other family
or wider disgraceful reality).
It finds its initiator and medium
in ideas and their expressions
(“Idea is but an object
and word is but an act,
are they not?”
– he reinsured himself
also in his “Text-Art-s”.
It was the text, which FILKO understood
as the possibility to free oneself
from the object-oriented relations.).
He considered himself to be the most integral part of the art
– its nucleus and agent
until the last of his days.

In Swift’s Laputa
(that is, in the literary work,
artistic-linguistic production),
one can notice relatively exact predictions,
both technical and astronomical, that were later confirmed.
FILKO combined astronomy and astrology,
and the differences between artist and scientist,
just like between sculpture and architect,
he didn’t find important,
and he even placed the free artist
above the narrow-minded scientist.
In this intention,
even FILKO understood the potentiality and relevance of art
as an interdisciplinary authority.

The spectral structure of his diagrams
could then lead us also
back to the positivist inversion of Dante’s Inferno.
Contrary to his funnel of evil,
FILKO, as the holistic idealist,
preferred the four-sided pyramid of the good
(energetic “objective pyramid” /
revolutionary quality).
Among other historical connotations,
there is certainly the work of Robert Fludd
and other hermeticists, esotericists, occultists.
FILKO’s speculations could be related
(in the sense of the unimportance of humanity
– “3rd dimension” in comparison to the supra-universal “5th dimension”)
also to the cosmicism of H. P. Lovecraft.

Another essential attribute of the sublimation
is the power
– a sufficient power over one’s weight
(both outer and inner)
and over averageness humanity
(so dull, so cruel,
so stupid)
everywhere you look.
For FILKO’s vigorous Self,
forced (of course) nevertheless to co-exist at least technically
with his own corporeality
as well as with common everydayness
(sensuality and sensibility),
it meant a huge burden.

The sublimation
depends on both physical
and mental power,
on a constant creation of economising, load-bearing structures,
modules and related methods.
FILKO’s extensive verbal, infographic, memetic and performative sets of arguments
(supporting the proof of inner coherence
of his outwardly always changing artwork
but maybe even seeking the respect of the outer plenum)
were in-themselves immediately becoming artworks
because, obviously, everything he did was art
(I repeat: without irony):
Since he didn’t have drinkable water at Snežienková
(only a sizeable storage tank for rainwater,
situated underground)
he had to bring it in plastic bottles.
They were immediately becoming part of the kinetic composition
(its soaring leftovers are even after his death,
in 2018,
still visible from the street).
As much as to the culture of waste,
(ecologically, environmentally,
but also in the anti-consumerist fashion)
it referred to the transcendence, metaphysics
(transparency and durability of plastic,
negligible mass, emptiness).

(since he allocated there also a place for his ashes,
on the floor, covered with a see-through glass hatch,
originally a lamp-shade of the technical lamp,
by the small channel which syphoned the surplus water
from the underground reservoir
as soon as it filled)
was originally constructed to last, accessible to the public,
even after his death.

All in all, it is not like with other artists’ estates,
where one faces a dilemma of distinguishing
an artwork from the system of footnotes:
FILKO touched in everything,
even documentation diapositives.
transforming them consciously into legitimate artistic mini-commodities,
as well as the huge shoes right when he was wearing them…
It remains, however, an impossible question
to sever unconditionally the individual elements of his opus magnum from himself
(and from the opus magnum itself).

And, of course,
– it is important to declare
that even if we try to conclude, summarise FILKO
we are talking about an unfinished work
– meaning we feel entitled only to the plane of probability
and not the spaces of truth.
That is, at best, we are writing notes in the manner of Claude Lefort
commenting on the unfinished Le Visible et l’invisible
by his tutor, Merleau-Ponty.

It means creating substantial constructions
that let us
(symbolically, with no hesitation)
take leave of the shackles of gravity /
imprisoning safety of the down-to-earth relativity,
and not just for that – to endure all of it,
but to bounce back – and to fly up.
They are metaphorical productions
sharing means.
They are significations
that allow us to teleport ourselves
from one domain to another,
from one language to another,
from the lack of discipline to interdisciplinarity,
from procession to profession.
I mention this also because
if we read FILKO’s statements according to the profane understanding of explicitness
(the critiques of rigorous materialism, scientism
or the fears of foolish idealism)
then we find ourselves in the nonsensical vortex of the spiritualist
(creationist, scientologic…)
Just as he used to combine
(let us remind the assemblage theory by Deleuze and Guattari
And its followers:
The theory of assemblage
(exponentiality of the process of becoming, interconnecting,
territorialisation and deterritorialisation as the vehicles of meaning…)
was introduced by Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari
in their Mille plateaux in 1980.
If has found its actualisation in Manuel DeLanda’s
A New Philosophy of Society: Assemblage Theory and Social Complexity; Continuum, 2006
and newly also in Tony D. Sampson’s
Assemblage Brain, Sense Making in Neuroculture
that interlinks the knowledge of neuro- and cognitive sciences
within the understanding of the Capitalist colonisation of the brain.)
we too could
(following Horace’s message)
approach our reading of his work with utmost openness
or even creativity.

although phenomenologically preoccupied with his alpha-ego,
declared himself to be an altruist.
His noetic altruism
(exclusively mental)
hasn’t to do with love towards common people
(I repeat: he didn’t care for “the 3rd dimension” anymore,
He considered it only to be interruptingly irrelevant
– the irrelevancy and Heidegger’s der Abgrund).
He anchored his altruism in the self-image of the substantive creator
trying (“TOGETHER EVERYONE ALONE”) to learn, to adopt
and to spread the knowledge,
the enlightenment among them (us)
– the aesthetical, ethical, sensual and intellectual photosynthesis
= to let them sublimate.
His thought was eminently egocentric
drawing from the understanding of personality as the core of this emanation
(of the emitter, of celestial mechanics)
useful to everyone.
FILKO’s self-perception of his autonomy
always reminds me, though sketchily, the legendary thesis Eigenheit of Max Stirner
from his Der Einzige und sein Eigenthum; 1844.
FILKO even used to identify his curriculum with the chronology of cosmos
– he even called his birth “Big Bang”.
FILKO’s missionary avantgardism
didn’t mean turning his back to the past
(he never ceased to manipulate it retro-futuristically)
but to darkness and baseness.
He considered the avantgardism
(which he didn’t see as an archaism of 20th century
but as an expression of the radical attitude, position, orientation,
direction of gaze and movement,
also methodologically)
to be the leading (if not the only proper) effort
and not a subcultural alternative.
That doesn’t contradict his eccentricity
which (as I’ve said already) we ascribe to him insultingly
from the perspective of our establishment of we.
FILKO wasn’t interested in becoming part of our mainstream
or to assert himself as the new focal point.
In the course of immortality
(ideologically, he didn’t believe death to be the end),
he wanted to keep “cloning”
(he re-de-signed his works as “FYLKO”, “PHYLKO”, “PHYILKO”, “PHYS”…,
which, in many cases, constituted also the main
if not outright the only leitmotif of his artworks)
or institutionalising his ego.
Within himself, he saw the mirroring of the universe,
the borderland of absolute critical reflectiveness.
He used introspection
as a telescope to explore the (imaginary) worlds.
His threshold egoism
had the prerogative of responsibility for itself.

And yet, we know (since Heraclitus himself) notoriously
that cosmos is not somewhere over there
– in the distance,
but that it begins with us
– right here.

FILKO insisted on the unstoppability and literality
of (self-)transfiguration
into pure “Xth dimension par excellence”
(the sovereign adjective
he so liked to employ
even in relation to the universalist, essentialist
“associations” of his own work,
to his “Fine-Art”).
He magnanimously assumed
his pneuma and psyche sublimated
in the face of the general loss of worldliness
(which are we,
the conservative materialists,
willing to share consensually:
cultural operations, institutional discourses,
social-political debates…
– not him –
for him, it was {over and over} the annoying “disco-postmodern”.
FILKO declaratively distinguished between “intelligence” and “shiftiness”.).
STANO saw his pneuma / psyche (“SPIRIT / SOUL”)
as something that dignifyingly bypasses the unbearability of (both our and illusory) realities,
as something that is dissolved (emerged, merged) in the total non-temporality,
in the ethereal sublimity.

In the case of the system of his small works,
as well as in the case of the larger architecture of his house,
we talk about a rigorous colouring of stratification.
In the case of his work,
as well as in the architecture of his house
(or dome or domain),
we talk about “cloning”,
or, in other words, metempsychosis or reincarnation
(re-drawing, re-naming, re-numerating,
re-installing, re-dating,
re-plication, re-constitution).

To lay if only just an intellectual (or artistic-creative, discursive) claim
(idea, prospect, concept, project)
to the unlimited higher (cosmic) order
meant, in FILKO’s case, a tension between the outer imperative of super-modernity
(to use the words of Marc Augé,
attribute-driven heuristic)
and an individual, inner (mental / spiritual) message
(the confrontation of their pluralities with his singularity).
It meant establishing a radical doctrine,
which necessarily referred also to the declination of revolutionary nomenclatures,
or even the installation of completely pioneering languages
– the generative grammar.

FILKO was one of those who explored the universe in its attributes, phenomena, elements
– however, he strived to establish the new archetypes all alone.

His synaesthetic systems of expressive,
organisational, orientational representamens,
significants, signifiers and interpreters
(…-ideas-colours-numbers-letters-elements-senses-layers-fields-dimensions-substances-media-divisions-coordinantes-referents-indices-icons-signs-symbols-totems-rhemas-arguments… /
I find useful to confront FILKO
also with the semiotics of Charles Sanders Peirce /considered classical nowadays/)
will remain accessible only to the concerned
until they are first polemically expounded,
and later become generalised.
We simply have to follow FILKO’s tags with the utmost respect,
we must read his work ONLY with their help
– that mattered to him tenaciously –
for that sake, he left us an exhaustive user manual
– this is what I’d like to stress:
(in hermeneutics,) we should strictly adhere to his system
before we start to apply any scientific
or the so-called artistic-scientific explanatory methods.

That’s also why
– beside the negating misunderstanding
(or the uncritical fascination
– which is just another form of misleading explication)
the event of pioneering sublimation
(what exceeds, stands out)
affords also other squeamishnesses
– it unavoidingly roots us out of the mundane life
and alienates us in the eyes of its occupants.
Consequently, it isolates us
(isolation is akin to utopia)
and caricatures us, dooms us to be intolerant monsters,
trippy creatures,
in the short-sighted gaze of that oversized majority.
The interpretative confrontation between the maximalism and megalomania
(dogma and demagogy)
Can explosively give birth to an insurmountable abysmality
(craters of criteria).
One cannot even build the pontis asinōrum there.
Pons asinorum = bridge of asses
(or, later, Elefuga = flight of the wretches)
is a mnemotechnical method of searching for arguments
by carrying over from one (probably unfamiliar) domain
into another (probably familiar),
a syllogism
– supposedly Euclid’s diagrammatic embodiment
of Aristotle’s Analytica Posteriora,
the third of his six Organon texts.
Attending to deformative majoritness,
I hear once again Swift’s satirical-cynical description of scientists in the air castle of Laputa,
which he named probably after Luther’s
“reason (of science)
that is the most beautiful Devil’s whore”
– loosely according to Luther’s last sermon
in Wittenburg on January 17, 1546.
La puta means whore in Spanish.
The levitation of this island
(enabled by the magnetism produced in its science laboratories)
is to represent the loftiness of science and scientists.
On top of that, Swift’s confession (infected by Luther)
physiologically deformed their characters / bodies.

The contemplated transcendence, metaphysics, essentiality of sublimity
(“silver”, “gold”, “white”
and “transparent”
{suggesting the most perfect “nothing”,
The grandiose nihil})
was the goal Magnum opus
of his revolting sublimation
(triumphally, over the rest of the “chakras”).

The sublimation is a process of becoming
and the sublime remains a(n incomplete) project of (his) hyper-being.

Boris Ondreička
January 31, 2018

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