Camera operator - Adam Nurzyński
"Even though his role in this project is controversial and much debated, Somnambulists is, beyond any doubt, heavily inspired by the work of the Polish artist Tadeusz Kantor (1915–1990). One of the most influential figures in Polish culture of the 20th century, whose legacy extended years after his death in 1990, Kantor was a truly versatile figure. Through the formation of the groundbreaking Cricot 2 theater in Kraków, as well as his constant innovation in the field of visual arts, he kept alive the ethos of the prewar artistic avant-garde. Maintaining an international profile and contacts, in the 1950s and 1960s, Kantor also operated as a “liaison” between the Polish scene and the latest trends in European avant-garde art, which he observed and brought home with him from abroad, especially Paris.
In 1955, it was informel painting that fascinated him in the French capital, and he immediately started to champion it in Poland. The film Somnambulists, made by two graduates of the Film School in Łódź, director Mieczysław Waśkowski (1929–2001) and cinematographer Adam Nurzyński, marks an attempt at adding a temporal dimension to informel canvasses, thus fully visualizing the basic premise of this genre of painting—its abstract, dynamic, and incidental play of color and forms. Here, patches of color flow freely on a glass pane, translating informel into the medium of film. Somnambulists is the second work by these filmmakers devoted to Kantor’s practice (which later changed substantially). It was preceded by Attention! . . . Painting, which was made in 1957 and portrayed Kantor at work." - Łukasz Mojsak, National Gallery of Art.