Biography

Andrej Zdravič (1952, Ljubljana) is an independent filmmaker and sound composer. Since his first film in 1973, inspired by music and nature, he has made over 30 independent films and soundtracks, and several multi-screen video installations, exploring the energies of natural phenomena and the messages they portend. In pursuing the potential of cinema to mediate experiences of natural phenomena that are also manifest in the urban world and mirrored in the human body (medicine has indeed been another influence on his work), Zdravič has developed a distinct cinema language that is rooted in his intimate perception of sound and visual rhythm.

Zdravič’s works have been screened in more than a hundred one-person shows and presentations across the USA and Europe; in retrospectives at Anthology Film Archives (New York), Centre Pompidou (Paris), Slovenska Kinoteka / Cankarjev dom (Ljubljana); at over one hundred-twenty group shows and festivals in numerous countries, including Brazil, Argentina, India and China; and broadcast on TV ARTE, ZDF 3SAT, RAISAT ART, KCET Los Angeles. He has also been commissioned to make a number of documentary and scientific films (earth sciences and microsurgical transplantation).

Andrej Zdravič represented Slovenia at the Venice Biennale 1999 and World EXPO‘98 in Lisbon. He is the recipient of a number of awards and honours, among others: the Western States Media Arts Fellowship, the US National Endowment for the Arts, the US National Science Foundation’s Antarctic Artists and Writers Program, the Prešeren Fund Award (Slovene national art award), and the Recognition of Important Works of Art, a doctoral degree equivalent, awarded by the University of Ljubljana. 

Zdravič has taught at the University of Wisconsin/Milwaukee and at San Francisco State University, and has been a visiting filmmaker at more than 30 other institutions of higher learning, including Stanford University, the Royal College of Art, London, Falmouth University, U.K., and the Academy of Fine Arts, Ljubljana.

After early education in Ljubljana and Algiers (French school, 1963-67), he studied Art History and Ethnology for two years at the University of Ljubljana and developed a keen interest in photography and a passion for radio and music - he worked on Radio Student as a DJ and sound engineer (1971-73). In early 1974, Zdravič left for the United States to study film. He received his BA (1975) and MA (1980) degrees from the State University of New York/Buffalo, Department of Media Study, renowned for its unique curriculum and faculty members - avantgarde filmmakers and video artists. His studies also included analog sound synthesis and early digital sampling instruments.

From 1975 to 1980, he lived and worked in the avant-garde film scene of New York City, attended workshops on electronic sound synthesis at PASS (Public Access Synthesizer Studio), and collaborated with electro-acoustic music composer David Tudor in 'Rainforest' (1979). Aspiring to make a film on the ocean, he moved to San Francisco in 1980, where he pursued his sound work and filmmaking for the next 17 years. He was also closely associated with the San Francisco Exploratorium, The Museum of Science, Art and Human Perception (1988-1997), where he established a video department and developed his moving-image orchestration concept – the Time Horizon installation.

In recent years, Zdravič’s work has been increasingly recognized and discussed in several books on film theory, ecocriticism and philosophy.

Since 1997 Andrej Zdravič works mostly in Slovenia and elsewhere in Europe.


Awards and Honours

2006 
  • Recognition of Important Works of Art, a doctoral degree equivalent, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia
2004
  • Medienkunstpreis: International Media Art Award - Heartbeat; ZKM | Zentrum für Kunst und Medientechnologie, Karlsruhe, Germany
1999
  • Prešeren Fund Award (the national art award) for the film Riverglass / V steklu reke, Slovenia
1998
  • Grand Prix - Riverglass, International Festival of New Film and Video, Split, Croatia
 
  • Best Art Video film - Riverglass, Slovenian Film Festival, Portorož, Slovenia
 
  • National Science Foundation’s Antarctic Artists and Writers Program - logistic support for Zdravič’s future IceLight film, USA
1991
  • Diplome d’Hônneur - Ocean Beat, Festival International du Film Maritime et d'Exploration, Toulon, France
1990
  • National Endowment for Arts, Water Waves - Time Horizon installation at the Exploratorium, San Francisco, USA
 
  • Western States Media Arts Fellowship - Ocean Beat, California, USA
1983
  • Honorable Mention - Anastomosis, Thomas Edison Black Maria Film & Video Festival, New Jersey, USA
1988
  • Special Mention - Restless, XXVI Ann Arbor Film Festival, Michigan, USA
1977
  • CAPS - Creative Artists Program Service Award - New York Studies I-V, New York City, USA


University Teaching & Workshops
/ selected

Dartmoor Arts, Devon - Filming Natural Phenomena workshop, U.K., 2015
Universitá degli studi di Milano I Bicocca – seminar 'La poetica immaginale nel cinema "elementale", Italy, 2014
University of Falmouth – two film seminars, Falmouth, U.K., 2008
Malmö University, College of Art and Communication, K3 – Sound in Sight workshop, Sweden, 2001
Fabrica Research Center – video & sound workshop, Treviso, Italy, 2001
Poletna šola vizualnega I Summer School of the Visual – workshop, Nova Gorica, Slovenia, 1997
San Francisco State University – Intermediate Filmmaking course, San Francisco, Califronia, USA, 1989
California College of Arts and Crafts – sound-for-film workshop, Oakland, California, USA, 1989
University of Wisconsin – Associate Professor: 3 Filmmaking courses, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA, 1984
University of Wisconsin – Summer sound film workshop, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA, 1984
New York State Media Arts Summer Program – workshops, Media Study/Buffalo, NY, USA, 1977 & 1986 
State University of New York, Center for Media Study – Graduate Teaching Fellow, Buffalo, NYUSA, 1975
State University of New York, Center for Media Study – Teaching Assistant, Buffalo, NY, USA, 1974

Works in Archives and Collections  / selected

Anthology Film Archives, New York City

The Exploratorium, San Francisco

Slovene Film Archives I Arhiv Republike Slovenije, Ljubljana, Slovenia 
Maribor Art Gallery I Video Collection, Maribor, Slovenia