Michael Pilz was born in 1943 in Gmünd, Lower Austria, close to where the „Iron Curtain“ used to separate Austria and Czechoslovakia. Years of 1952-55 he spent as choirboy in Monastery boarding school in Zwettl. In 1954 he started to take pictures and work with 8 mm film. In 1956 he moved to Vienna and became influenced by work of Jackson Pollock, Karl Prantl, Robert Frank, Jean-Luc Godard, Michelangelo Antonioni, Robert Bresson, etc.
Later on he developed a growing interest in the technical, material, and mental aspects of cinematography as well as the various ways of expressing the subconscious in film which lead in his experimental period of the sixties. He had, above all, experimented with different cameras and the film material itself (all forms of direct treatment such as painting, scratching), handheld and out-of-control-moving cameras, and absurd, that is to say anarchist staging. He took various approaches to examine pure („basic“) cinematic phenomena. Unfortunately most of that experimental material has been lost.
During the seventies Pilz worked as author and director in different genres for various departments of ORF, Austrian Broadcasting Corporation (cultural programs, entertainment, documentaries, including movie Franz Grimus, 1977).
Since 1983, Pilz has engaged in delivering occasional lectures and holding workshops on aesthetics and experimental filmmaking, mainly abroad.
In 1988/1990 he made Feldberg - experimental fiction feature film without dialogs.
During last two decades Pilz has been concentrating mostly on producing films shot on his extensive travels.
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