Monday, May 14, 2018

Zlatko Bourek (1929-2018)

With great sadness, today I heard the news that Croatian artist Zlatko Bourek has passed away. Zlatko was a true renaissance man. He was a painter, sculptor, costume designer, scenographer, and illustrator. He directed theatre plays, feature films, and also directed and animated movies. Lots of people don't know that at the age of 14, he joined partisans and from 1943–1945 he fought with them against the Nazis. He was one of the most generous, soft-spoken people I have ever met.

I met him for the first time when I was seventeen years old and I had a summer job working as an animator at Zagreb Film. Later, in 1980, I designed a poster for his version of puppet Tom Stoppard version of Hamlet. Zlatko not only directed the play, but also created the puppets and did all the sceneography.

In 2013, he told me the he had a present for me: that he painted a likeness of me in his painting Adam i Eva. And he told me, "don't worry—you are not naked!" This comment was meant to reassure me, since I knew very well about his provocative sense of humor that very often appears in his work.

I'm really going to miss him.

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