Resistance and Experiment – Bulgarian Art-cinema from the 1950’s Cover Image
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Арткиното като съпротива – българските опити от 50-те години
Resistance and Experiment – Bulgarian Art-cinema from the 1950’s

Author(s): Ingeborg Bratoeva-Daraktchieva
Subject(s): History, Fine Arts / Performing Arts, Cultural history, Visual Arts, Political history, History of Communism, Film / Cinema / Cinematography
Published by: Институт за изследване на изкуствата, Българска академия на науките

Summary/Abstract: This paper explores the first attempts of Bulgarian directors to create art-films, made in the end of the 1950’s in a very complicated political context. The key titles in the process are „The Live Is Going Slowly By...“ (1957) and „On a Small Island“ (1958), crafted by their directors Binka Zhelyazkova and Rangel Vulchanov in neorealist style. After a historical review of the establishment of socialist realism as the official artistic style in Bulgarian cinema in the 1940’s, the study focuses on the moderation of political pressure in 1956, which gave Bulgarian directors the illusion of artistic freedom. In this context Binka Zhelyazkova and Rangel Vulchanov, exploiting the neorealist style, put with their works the beginning of the non-conformist films in Bulgaria. Their artistic attempts provoked a massive confrontation with the communist censorship, which resulted in suspension of the films from domestic display, from international distribution and from festival competitions. However, in our time “The Live Is Going Slowly By...“ (1957) and „On a Small Island“ (1958) are considered milestones in the development of Bulgarian feature cinema, and, at the same time, the Bulgarian (albeit very modest) contribution to the entire neorealist artistic tradition.

  • Issue Year: 2015
  • Issue No: 3
  • Page Range: 16-21
  • Page Count: 6
  • Language: Bulgarian