BIFF Screens ‘The Happy Film’ at the Mahaiwe

Stefan Sagmeister (photo Ben Wolf)

(GREAT BARRINGTON, Mass.) – In a taste of what’s to come the following weekend, the Berkshire International Film Festival (BIFF) will screen “The Happy Film,” a feature-length documentary about a designer who turns himself into an art project, at the Mahaiwe on Friday, May 26, at 6:30pm. The festival itself takes place at venues in Great Barrington and Pittsfield from June 1 through June 4.

“The Happy Film” is a feature-length documentary in which graphic designer Stefan Sagmeister undergoes a series of self-experiments outlined by popular psychology to test once and for all if it’s possible for a person to have a meaningful impact on his own happiness.

“The Happy Film” tells the story of Austrian designer Stefan Sagmeister.  He lives in New York, the city of his dreams, and he has success in his work, designing album covers for the Rolling Stones, Jay-Z, and the Talking Heads. But in the back of his mind he suspects there must be something more. He decides to turn himself into a design project. Can he redesign his personality to become a better person? Is it possible to train his mind to get happier?

Sagmeister pursues three controlled experiments of meditation, therapy, and drugs, grading himself along the way. But real life creeps in and confounds the process: art, sex, love, and death prove impossible to disentangle. His unique designs and painfully personal experiences mark a journey that travels closer to himself than ever intended.

A panel discussion will follow the screening with Sagmeister, his co-director and producer Ben Nabors, and psychotherapist Sheena Hankin.

Tickets are $20 for the film and panel discussion and $50 for the film, panel discussion and an “After Party” at 8:30pm with Sagmeister, Nabors, and Hankin at a private Berkshire home.  Tickets are on sale now and can be purchased at the Mahaiwe Box Office.





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