"[Food] is one of my persistent obsessions that had its source in my childhood. I was a child who did not want to eat. My parents were desperate. They would pour fish oil, fortified wine and various other liquids into me to enhance the taste of food, and they would send me to ‘fattening’ camps and other such places. I ended up so weakened and bony that I could not stand and my mum had to push me in a wheelchair. I was not even accepted in school. Besides, a chewing mouth is quite a fitting symbol of this aggressive, all-devouring civilization." [x]

"Food is perhaps the most apt symbol of our civilization because in its insatiable aggression, our civilization consumes everything around us: nature, animals, whole ethnic groups, cultures… everything gets digested in its utilitarian maw only to be excreted as money—the excrement of our times. Just like a small child our civilization considers its excrements to be the most valuable product it managed to squeeze out, and uses it to reward its favorites." [x]

Jan Švankmajer on the recurrent theme of food in his films.

"To me, animation is like magic. It’s not about making things move, but making things live. This is the domain of magic. And that is what I have always tried to achieve in my films—not just to move objects, but to breathe life into them and explore their inner being."

Jan Švankmajer
Born September 4, 1934

“I like things that have passed through human hands. Things that have been touched. Such things are charged with emotions that are capable of revealing themselves under certain, extremely sensitive circumstances. I collect such objects, surround myself with them and in the end I cast such ‘fetishes’ in my films. That’s also the reason why I don’t like computer animation. Virtual reality doesn’t have a tactile dimension. Objects and figures created on a computer have no past.”

Jan Švankmajer (born September 4, 1934)

The Flat (Byt) // dir. Jan Švankmajer