DOCompass Block – 20 years of the Ernő Kunt Visual Anthropology Studio

The founders of the Ernő Kunt Ernő Visual Anthropology Studio, which is 20 years old this year, consider it important to make the concept and methodology of visual anthropology known and popularized as widely as possible, whether in higher education or in secondary education. It is also important for them to emphasise that in visual anthropology, the natural borders and regions that define the cultural unity of a region across national borders are much more important. This is a particularly important issue in the “birthplace” of the Workshop, Miskolc, in the backward regions of North-Eastern Hungary, where cultural differences are still unaddressed. Founded in 2003, the Studio is united in its understanding of visual anthropology, despite the diversity of its membership: it is a proponent of the “Miskolc School”, as envisioned and initiated by Ernő Kunt. Although this approach differs in some respects from traditional anthropological film theory and practice, it can be seen more as an Eastern European synthesis of these views than as a fundamentally new method. Aware of the fact that anthropology has shifted predominantly towards verbalism, which is now practically the only acceptable arena for scholarship, the members of the Workshop strive to make anthropological films that meet the requirements of both anthropology and filmmaking.