Želimir Žilnik

The cult director and one of the most appreciated filmmakers from Eastern Europe, Želimir Žilnik, was a guest of the sixth edition of the Ceau, Cinema! Festival in Timişoara and Gottlob in July 2019, where he was honored through a special focus in the context of the Art Encounters Biennial 2019. Žilnik is considered one of the pioneers of the “docudrama” genre. In the late 60s, his socially militant films brought him praise in former Yugoslavia, but drew the attention of censorship during the 70s and 80s due to their strong criticism of the political system. Žilnik attended the Ceau, Cinema! Festival together with his producer, Sarita Matijevic (Playground Produkcija). Their presence in the festival is part of the collaboration with Art Encounters Biennale 2019. On October 4th, Želimir Žilnik is holding a workshop in Timișoara, preceded by another series of screenings from his previous works.


Želimir Žilnik (b. 1942, Yugoslavia) is an artist-filmmaker from Novi Sad, Serbia. In his highly prolific career, Žilnik has made over 50 feature-length and short films which have been exhibited internationally at film festivals including Berlin, Toronto, Rotterdam, Moscow and Oberhausen. His ability to observe and unleash compelling narratives out of the lives of ordinary people serves as the common thread throughout his work. Recently, Žilnik has been the subject of major career retrospectives at Centre Pompidou, Paris, 2019; Cinemateca Argentina, 2018; Anthology Film Archive, New York & Harvard Film Archive, 2017; etc. Since 2010, his work has been featured in art galleries, institutes and museums around the world including Documenta, Kassel; Venice Biennale; ICA London; mumok Vienna; MACBA Barcelona; MoMA New York; National Gallery of  Art in Washington DC; MMK Museum für Moderne Kunst Frankfurt; LENTOS Kunstmuseum Linz; Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea in Rome, among others.