A film by Michal Kosakowski


Michal Kosakowski
Director, writer, producer, director of photography, editor

Born in Szczecin, Poland, in 1975.

Kosakowski is the director, writer, producer, director of photography and editor of numerous short and experimental films, documentaries and video installations. His work includes more than 70 films, many of which have been shown in international festivals and exhibitions, and have received numerous awards. Currently he is finishing his first feature-length film ‘Zero Killed’ (2011).

At the age of ten Michal Kosakowski moved from Poland to Austria, where he discovered his passion for film making and film editing. The result was the foundation of Dark Productions, his independent film production company in Vienna that allowed him to experiment with his visual language following the principle of learning by doing, consequently producing more than 20 short films.

After graduating from the Academy of Commerce in Vienna in 1995, he studied film production at the Vienna Film Academy. From 1997 to 2000 he attended the artists’ workshop Fabrica, the Benetton Communication Research Centre near Venice, Italy. This allowed him to develop his own film ideas in collaboration with the Italian photographer Oliviero Toscani and Marco Müller, the Venice Film Festival director. He also experimented with new ways of visual communication for several cultural, social and political institutions, such as the United Nations and The International Criminal Court. In 1998, he worked in North Africa as cinematographer for Mohammed Soudani’s documentary film ‘Story Tellers’ (1998) and directed his film ‘Holy War’ (1999), which explores the crossovers between Christmas and war.

In 2000 Michal Kosakowski returned to Vienna where he continued his creative work in the commercial area as concept developer and film editor in the renowned agency DMC – Design for Media and Communication. In 2003 he founded the film production company Nosugar Added, focusing on documentaries, artist portraits, music films, commercials and experimental films, such as the award-winning ‘Sleepers’ (2002) and ‘Gipsy Express’ (2002). He also directed the short film ‘Wait a Minute’ (2004) and the documentary ‘The Heart of It’ (2004/2010) in collaboration with the Serbian writer Goran Mimica and the French writer Joseph Denize.

In 2006 Kosakowski moved to Munich, Germany where he intensified his artistic collaboration with the Austrian artist and curator Uli Aigner. Their film projects, such as ‘GhostAkademie’ (2005), ‘Just Like the Movies’ (2006), ‘Fortynine’ (1999–2007) and ‘The Inquisitive Museum’ (2010), were hosted by venues as renowned as the Kunsthalle Wien, Centre Pompidou Paris, Lentos Kunstmuseum Linz, Kunstwerke Berlin, Städtische Kunsthalle München Lothringer13, C/O Berlin – International Forum for Visual Dialogues, the Rotterdam Film Festival, KunstFilmBiennale Cologne, ZKM – Zentrum für Kunst und Medientechnologie Karlsruhe, Museo National Centro De Arte Reina Sofia Madrid, Pierogi Gallery New York, Soho Centre Beijing, Museo da Arte Garrillo Gil Mexico City, Multiplicidade Rio de Janeiro or the Clair-Obscur Filmfestival Basel.

Kosakowski’s passion for music has triggered several music film productions with and about the MKO (Munich Chamber Orchestra), the string trio TrioCoriolis, the Dutch musician and musicologist Francis Kuipers, the Berlin drummer Steven Garling, the Viennese violinist Mosa Sisic, the New York electronic music artist Ray Sweeten and the British DJ Graham Stark.

Since 2004 Kosakowski has been working with the Italian composer Paolo Marzocchi. For their experimental film ‘Just Like the Movies’ (2006) about the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Michal Kosakowski was given the award for best film and Paolo Marzocchi received the best original score prize by the international film festivals of Milan, Amsterdam, Santiago de Chile and Forli, Italy. The film was also acquired for the collections of the Library of the University of Amsterdam and the Danish Film Institute and is regularly shown at international symposia and film seminars. ‘Just Like the Movies’ is also used as an instructional film by universities and academies worldwide.

From 2008 to 2011, Michal Kosakowski was active as a lecturer, teaching experimental film and theory of film-making at the MD.H (Media Design Hochschule) in Munich, Germany. In 2011 he was Jury Member of the Feature Film Competition at the Milano Film Festival, Italy.

Between 1996 and 2007 Michal Kosakowski created the video-installation ‘Fortynine’ with more than 160 participants from 28 countries on the subject of murder fantasies. His first feature film ‘Zero Killed’ (2008–2011), which will be released in 2012 and is produced by his own production house Michal Kosakowski Films, results from this.

He currently lives and works in Berlin, Germany, where he is developing his forthcoming feature films ‘Dark Tourism’ and ‘Visit from Poland’, in addition to the experimental film ‘So Others May Live’.

Paolo Marzocchi
Music composer

Born in Pesaro, Italy, in 1971.

Composer and pianist, over the past 15 years Marzocchi has composed and performed music for various projects and occasions. He concentrates on music for theatre, film, experimental projects and ‘pure’ composition.

Marzocchi’s compositions have been published by Casa Musicale Sonzogno and Rugginenti Editore and have been performed in various renowned venues, including the KKL – Luzern Konzertsaal, the Auditorium Parco della Musica (Rome), the Suntory Hall (Tokyo), Teatro dal Verme (Milan), Teatro delle Muse (Ancona), Biennale di Venezia, Teatro de Jalisco (Guadalajara), as well as in China, Mexico, Brazil and other countries. His compositions have also been presented by various TV and radio networks, including ARTE, ZDF, ARD, IMER and RAI.

Marzocchi has collaborated with various artists, such as conductors Michele Mariotti, Corrado Rovaris and Alberto Zedda, poet Gianni D’Elia, hornist and conductor Alessio Allegrini, director Henning Brockhaus and video artists Stefano Franceschetti and Cristiano Carloni. He has also composed the music for several sountracks to Michal Kosakowski’s projects, including the award-winning ‘Just Like the Movies’, the ‘Fortynine’ video-installation, and recently the experimental film ‘Zero Killed’.

From 2000 to 2010 Marzocchi was a professor at the University of Macerata and Academies of Fine Arts in Urbino and Macerata.

Upcoming events include: the première of a symphonic work commissioned by Teatro la Fenice Foundation, Venice (February 2012).

Claudia Engl
Executive producer, additional photography, editor

Born in Munich, Germany, in 1984.

She is currently directing and producing short, experimental, documentary and corporate films with her freelance company c.en arts Film- and Photoproduction.

While still in elementary school she became interested in photography. During high school she learned the techniques of film laboratory and took the chance to experiment and design her own ideas.

At the age of 14 she extended her knowledge and discovered her passion for film making and film editing. One year later she had already produced her first movie Training (2000) and became a member of her school’s film production class, which has won several awards in national events such as the Bavarian Savings Bank Award (2002), the Crossmedia Award (2002) and an Award given by the Editorial Department for Education and Science of the Bavarian Broadcasting Service (2004).

In 2005 Claudia Engl enrolled at the MD.H (Media Design Hochschule) in Munich from which she graduated in 2008 with a degree in On-Air Design. Since 2008 she has been working as an independent artist and filmmaker collaborating with the director and producer Michal Kosakowski – who was her lecturer and examiner for her B.A. at Media Design Hochschule.

This collaboration has produced films including a corporate film about an international study course called SOWOSEC (2008) and a music film production with and about the string trio TrioCoriolis (2010). In addition Engl assisted Kosakowski in several stages of the production of Kosakowski’s first feature-length film ‘Zero Killed’ (2008–2011).

Uli Aigner
Executive producer

Born in Austria, 1965.

From 1984 to 1990 she studied art and product design at the University of Applied Arts, Vienna, followed by a period as a guest student at Württembergische Filmakademie, Ludwigsburg, Germany, from 1991 to 1993. Between 2001 and 2003 she worked as a visiting professor at the Akademie of Fine Arts in Munich and from 2006 until 2010 she was the director of Städtische Kunsthalle München Lothringer13. In 2011 she moved to Berlin with Michal Kosakowski, and their children Josef, Marie, Lucy and Zoe.

Upon finishing her studies she won several national art prizes in Austria and international scholarships. During the 1990s she split her time living and working in Mexico, London, New York and Vienna. Her multimedia works have been shown at Museum Moderner Kunst, Stiftung Ludwig Vienna, the MAK Vienna, Lentos Kunstmuseum Linz, Kunsthalle Wien, Museum der Moderne Salzburg, Neue Galerie Graz, Martin Gropius Bau Berlin, Kunstverein Hamburg, Rathausgalerie München, La Panaderia Mexico City, Museo da Arte Garrillo Gil Mexico City, the Freud Museum London, Austrian Cultural Forum London and New York, National Museum Riga, Kulturforum Prague and others.

Her early video works have been shown internationally in galleries and museums, including ‘Donnerstag’ (1990), with the Austrian modern dancer and choreographer Rose Breuss, co-produced by the Centre Pompidou, and ‘Metanoia’ (1994), produced at the Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg and first shown at the MAK Galerie in Vienna, and ‘Welldone’ (1999), a video performance with the Austrian artist Elke Krystufek, co-produced by the Wiener Festwochen and the Museum des 20. Jahrhunderts (20er Haus) in Vienna.

Together with filmmaker Michal Kosakowski, Aigner produced the video installation ‘GhostAkademie’ in 2004/2005, and in 2010, the video ‘The Inquisitive Museum’, both works examine institutional criticism.

She is currently working on a book about her curatorial work at the Städtische Kunsthalle München Lothringer13 in the context of cultural politics, and an open cycle of large-scale color pencil drawings ‘contemporary portraits’.

Uli Aigner is the executive producer for the film production company Michal Kosakowski Films.

Tatjana Jakob
Supervising sound editor, sound design

Born in Jena, Germany in 1981.

The passion for sound and music made her resist all temptations to study medicine or space-flight engineering. Starting to play the piano and the guitar at the age of five, she continued composing and performing music for various theatre plays after leaving school. After two years on stage, by chance, Jakob got connected with a company producing sound for motion pictures.

Her first look behind the scenes offered the opportunity to work as a sound designer on the documentary ‘The Story of a Weeping Camel’ (2003), which was nominated by the American Film Academy for the Oscar ‘Best Foreign Film’ and won Best Documentary of the year at the 57th Directors Guild of America Award in 2005.

In 2007 Jakob was supervising sound editor on ‘The Counterfeiters’ (directed by Stefan Ruzowitzky), which won the Best Foreign Film Oscar in 2008. The sound team was invited to several conferences to present the sound work of this film, such as the well-known international SoundTrack Cologne or the German ‘Tonmeister Tagung’.

Over the last eight years Jakob has worked on numerous award-winning feature television and cinema motion pictures such as ‘Kroko’ (director by Silke Enders) – winning the German Film Academy Award and the European Film Prize in 2004 and ‘Bal – Honey’ (directed by Semih Kaplanoğlu) – winner of the Golden Bear at the 60th International Film Festival Berlinale 2010.

It has always been important for Jakob, however, not only to work on financially huge projects, but also to support ambitious, visionary film projects such as ‘The Green Wave’ (directed by Ali Samadi Ahadi) – winner of the famous German Adolf Grimme Prize and the German Human Rights Film Prize.

As a sound designer, she has been responsible for more then 70 documentaries, experimental, feature and short films. Even while working for well-known German TV stations, such as Arte, ZDF, ARD, RTL, 3sat, her heart has always belonged to movie theatres. There is no place where you can be more precise and creative with sound.

‘Being a sound designer is not a question of yes or no. It’s passion and pure emotion.’

Stefano Sasso
Electronic sound artist

Born in Italy, 1978.

Graduated in Science of Communication from the University of Macerata. He teaches Multimedia Acoustics and Music for Media at the same University.

Musician and sound designer, he has collaborated with various artists from Italy and other countries, including illustrator and animator Simone Massi, painter and animator Julia Gromskaya, composer Paolo Marzocchi, video artists Stefano Franceschetti and Cristiano Carloni. His work concentrates on interaction between music and other languages, as well as live performance, and has written original soundtracks to short movies, animation movies, installations, performances and contemporary theatre works.

He has won several international prizes and nominations for his soundtracks.