Mark Hogencamp’s ‘Marwencol’ Documentary at SXSW 2010

19 Mar

Marwencol directed by  Jeff Malmberg, is a a fantasy world created by Mark Hogancamp, and made it’s debut at SXSW this year, and just won the Grand Jury Award for Best Documentary Feature. Another screening has been added for tomorrow, Saturday March 20th at 5:00pm at the Alamo Lamar Theater.

Mark Hogancamp at work in Marwencol

Film’s synopsis: A documentary about the fantasy world of Mark Hogancamp. After being beaten into a brain-damaging coma by five men outside a bar, Mark builds a 1/6th scale World War II-era town in his backyard. Mark populates the town he dubs “Marwencol” with dolls representing his friends and family and creates life-like photographs detailing the town’s many relationships and dramas. Playing in the town and photographing the action helps Mark to recover his hand-eye coordination and deal with the psychic wounds from the attack that happened in April of 2000, were he was attacked outside a bar in New York State. Though Mark would be revived by paramedics he would spend nine days in a coma and awake brain damaged and so badly battered that his own mother didn’t even recognize him. The beating was so severe that his entire memory was in tatters.

When Mark and his photographs were discovered, a prestigious New York gallery set up an art show. Suddenly Mark’s homemade therapy is deemed “art”, forcing him to choose between the safety of his fantasy life in Marwencol and the real world that he’s avoided since the attack.

Hogencamp’s story is amazingly sad, yet one of amazing perseverance. We WANT to see this film! View more photos here at

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