Produced by the experimentally oriented Neoplanta Studio in the Serbian town of Novi Sad, White People is the most ambitious of the 40-odd short films created by the members of the Slovene OHO movement and group between 1965 and 1971. Directed by Naško Križnar (b. 1943), the group’s most prolific filmmaker, and staged with the participation of OHO’s extended circle of friends, the film was shot in the winter of 1969 around the Slovene town of Kranj and edited and produced in early 1970. It was one of only two OHO films shot on 35 mm film and edited using professional equipment.
Its structure revolves around the most minimal of plots, which Križnar and fellow OHO members David Nez and Milenko Matanović wrote up in a “script” so as to secure funding from Neoplanta. “White people live in white houses, wear white clothes, eat yogurt and drink milk. They raise white sheep and white mice; when snow falls, they arrange a festival." Though this text was subsequently elaborated to include detailed descriptions of the film’s scenes, the initial draft makes it clear that White People was not driven by a strong narrative. Rather, it was an artists’ film made up of a series of striking images and loosely interconnected actions that recall OHO’s Happenings and works of performance art, which the group staged regularly in public spaces in Ljubljana and elsewhere from 1968 on. Naško Križnar himself has noted that making the film was the last big project OHO undertook as an extended collective, and he suggested in a 1995 interview that “today, [the film] seems to me a catalogue of certain OHO actions.