Living History | A film in the making by the Karl König Institute

The Karl König Institute for Art, Science and Social Life is a non-profit organisation that provides support for the Karl König legacy via the Archive, books and other publications, research and events, and activities and initiatives around the world.

The Institute has embarked on an ambitious project, a film titled Living History – which will consist of interviews with individuals in Europe and North America who have memories of encountering, living and working with Dr Karl König, the initiator and co-founder of the Camphill Movement in 1940. What makes this project even more special is the essence of ‘last chance’. As the Camphill founders worked actively with Karl König in the middle decades of the last century, it has, unfortunately, been observed that potential interviewees have either passed away before interviews had been scheduled, or they could no longer share accurate recollections. The Institute is therefore keen to move forward in a timely manner and have confidence that the necessary funding will be obtained for the entirety of the project.

The Camphill Foundation UK & Ireland has provided a grant of €10,000 to support the project which will help cover the cost of conducting interviews, as well as editing the hours of footage obtained.

Working with several experienced filmmakers, photographers and volunteers, and with considerable research and engagement from the Institute staff in Europe and North America, they have compiled a list of 53 individuals who are able to recount anecdotes and experiences of Dr König – as a human being, teacher, leader, humanitarian and visionary.

The film recordings, compiling over 50 hours of unique interviews in German and English, will be a valuable interdisciplinary resource, edited into several films including a 45-minute documentary and various smaller reels that will give a varied, colourful and essential portrait of the man who inspired and continues to inspire thousands of people around the world. This visual storytelling will be augmented with photos, documents, letters and additional film footage from Karl König’s work in the early years of Camphill. The film will provide a powerful and unique documentary of this exceptional man and his times, as well as of life in the Camphill communities.

It is an honour for the Camphill Foundation UK & Ireland to support the Karl König Institute with their Living History project and we are grateful to have received a letter of thanks from Richard Steel, CEO. This will be a very valuable and special film for the Camphill Movement around the world and we are very much looking forward to seeing it come to fruition.

“We, from the Karl König Institute, would like to express our deepest gratitude for your generous grant towards our project Living History. Your contribution makes further work possible and gives us courage to complete the project! We hope that the results will be of interest and use to Camphill around the world, but also for other institutions, like the Jewish Museum, the Viennese City Archive, the Curative Education Research Center, the Section in Dornach and many more.”

The Karl König Institute is seeking further donations from organisations and people who can support this project to help give a voice to a wonderful group of people whose unique and personal stories will inform and inspire generations to come.

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