Samosiuk, Zygmunt

(1939-1983)
   Cinematographer who worked on thirty-two films, several of them classic examples of Polish cinema. Trained at the Łódź Film School (diploma in 1965), Samosiuk started his career working on several documentary films directed by Janusz Kidawa and later by Marek Piwowski (Psycho-drama, 1969, and Cork-Screw, 1971). He gained renown for the first feature films he photographed for Andrzej Wajda: Hunting Flies (1969), Landscape after Battle (1970), and Birchwood (1970). The latter, known for its cadaverous palette of colors, owes its inspiration to the Polish art nouveau painter Jacek Malczewski in its depiction of the struggle between love and death. Samosiuk also excelled in films requiring quasi-documentary depictions of reality. For example, he worked closely with Andrzej Trzos-Rastawiecki on Record of Crime (1974), Convicted (1976), and Wherever You Are, Mr. President (1978) and with Janusz Morgenstern on Kill That Love (1972).
   Samosiuk also worked with other established film directors. With Janusz Majewski, he created stylish evocations of the past in The Gorgon Affair (1977) and The Lesson of a Dead Language (1979). In Austeria (1983), he worked with director Jerzy Kawalerowicz to produce a nostalgic account of the lost Jewish world. In Piotr Szulkin's films, such as Golem (1980) and War of the Worlds: Next Century (1981/1983), he was responsible for the cold beauty of their painterly images. Samosiuk received several awards for his contribution to cinema, including prizes at the Festival of Polish Films for Record of Crime, The Gorgon Affair, and Wherever You Are, Mr. President.
   Historical Dictionary of Polish Cinema by Marek Haltof

Guide to cinema. . 2011.

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