Saturday, May 06, 2006

Vlado Kristl

Vlado Kristl is a great mystery to me. I have known these stills from "The Great Jewell Robbery" (Zagreb Film, Yugoslavia, 1960) since 1962, the year they were published in "Design In Motion" by John Halas and Roger Manvell. I had never heard of Vlado Kristl, let alone seen his animations but I found his graphic animation work supremely stimulating and inspiring. In 1970, in Barcelona, at a German cultural centre, they had a Kristl retrospective but to my chagrin I discovered that they were live action shorts and they informed us that Kristl couldn't come because of visa difficulties. The films were curious but not remarkable, amateurish super 8 psychodelia, so popular in those days..Some of them showed his paintings, abstract work, very colourful but not original. It was a big let down. In the mid-eighties, London's Channel Four showed "The Great Jewell Robbery" and I managed to video it. It was as beautiful as I figured by looking at the stills. I would even dare to say that it is one of the most interesting animated shorts made in Europe. I watched the video many times and my enthusiasm for it has never dimished. Alas, I still know nothing about it's author. I colourised this stills myself because they are of poor quality in the reproduction. Click on the image to enlarge.

"Don Quixote" (No date). This film is even more elusive. Another Kristl epic produced by Zagreb Studios. I only know this still, which I love.


Blogger Elliot said...

Absolutely amazing.
This is easily my most favourite of these inspirational artists you've posted.

9:43 pm  
Blogger Oscar Grillo said...

Good, ain't it?...The film is very good too.

10:27 pm  
Blogger Elliot said...

I look forward to catching it myself sometime!
Thank you again for this one.

4:06 am  
Blogger Matt J said...

Woah! You've unearthed a holy relic here- the colour stills look marvellous but the B&W Don Quixote is even more intriguing - Sancho Panza's donkey is terrific!

1:57 pm  
Blogger its-a-wrap said...

I have copies of all his films if you are interested

12:30 am  
Blogger Kenny said...

I've had a photocopy of that long still from 'The Great Jewel Robbery' on my desk for about 9 years now - with no idea where it came from! I remember a book at college that had pages of fantastic design, but whose title I had forgotten. I presumed the photocopy was from that book and wondered whether I would ever stumble across it again - maybe it was 'Design in Motion'? Thanks Oscar! I just had a look around the web and it appears Vlado was Croatian, and an accomplished painter and poet as well as film-maker. Tantalising:

its-a-wrap, I'd be interested in seeing those films also.

11:43 am  
Blogger Oscar Grillo said...

Hans: If you can get me a copy of Kristl work I'll exchange for anything you wish....Is there anything you are after?

2:51 pm  
Anonymous Gustavo said...

Muy bueno. Me interesaría recibir copia de esos filmes. Ofrezco un jamón como parte de pago.

5:59 pm  
Blogger Poptique said...

Those are beautiful - but to see them in motion...that would be something else.

Terrible shame Channel Four (or any UK channel for that matter) doesn't screen anything like this anymore.

10:12 pm  
Blogger AMblog said...

Dear Oscar Grillo
I worked with John Halas before he died, and remember your name tumbling out of his lips. Very pleased to see your blogs, very pleased blogging exists, very inspired by your collected thoughts and images ...

8:17 pm  

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