Katharina Copony

Katharina Copony

Katharina Copony is an independent filmmaker living in Berlin and Vienna. She studied visual media art at the University of Applied Arts in Vienna with Peter Weibel. With a background in video art and photography, she nowadays makes documentary films, which are presented internationally, e.g. Arsenal – Institute for Film and Media Art Berlin and the Anthology Film Archives New York as well as broadcast on television. She received prestigious awards, e.g. from Vienna International Film festival, ARTE Documentary Film Award and Best Film in Jeonju IIFF Korea. She was Artist-in-Residence in Moriya (JPN), Rome, London, and Sarajevo. As a script supervisor she participated in several award-winning feature films (i.a. Barbara Albert, Valeska Grisebach, Jessica Hausner). She is a lecturer at the University of the Arts in Berlin. In December 2019 the Filmarchive Austria presented a retrospective of her work.

“I’m interested in the relationship of the audible to the visible, of inner to outer. What lies behind, above, beneath the images? The sound can support or contradict the image. And it can also convey something that goes far beyond the image. Between this presence and absence, the poetry of cinema occurs.“

Filmography (selection): 2019 At the Barracks • 2016 Moghen Paris • 2014 Player • 2009 Oceanul Mare • 2006 Il Palazzo • 2004 Kanegra • 2001 der wackelatlas – gathering and hunting with H.C. Artmann, in cooperation with Emily Artmann


Accademia della Follia is rehearsing in one of the old pavilions of Parco San Giovanni in Trieste. Every morning from Monday to Friday the free theater group meets here, open to all.

In the early 1970s the Italian psychiatrist Franco Basaglia starts to radically reform the psychiatric hospital San Giovanni which finally leads to its closure, thus initiating a far-reaching change in psychiatry. Basaglia is convinced that “a therapeutic relationship is only possible with a free mentally ill person”. He invites artists to work together with the former patients. The whole city and its inhabitants are involved, concerts are performed, legendary parties are celebrated, open mental health centers are founded and work collectives are created in which the patients are paid for their labor.

In the early 1980s, the Counseling Center for Mental Health and Social Issues is established in Graz as one of the first social-psychiatric centers in Austria. Its founders are strongly oriented towards the “Modello Triestino”. One of them is my mother. Following up on my earlier film Kanegra (2004), which portrays four clients of this counseling center during a trip to Croatia, I take up this track again.

What happened to the ideas of Basaglia and which effects do they have today?


Period: June and September 2021

Portrait by Emily Artmann

Supported by:
das land steiermark