Ivan Martinac (born 1938 in Split, Croatia) — one of the most famous and respected Croatian author of experimental films. He studied at the architectural department of the University of Architecture, Construction and Geodesy in Zagreb, and took a degree in architecture from the University of Architecture in Belgrade; also in Belgrade, he attended the Center for Professional Qualification of Film Workers. In 1964, he received recognition as a master of amateur film (he worked in Cinema clubs in Belgrade and Split). Many of his short experimental films, feature films, documentaries and commercial films, he made as professional productions. Altogether, he made more than 70 short films. Among them the most famous are „Monolog o Splitu” (1961—1962), trilogy „Suncokreti” (1959—1961), „Rondo”, „Lice” (both 1963), „Armagedon ili kraj”, „Mrtvi dan” (both 1965), „Život je lijep” (1966), „Ubrzanje” (1968), „Uska vrata” (1974), „Most” (1977), „Izlazak” (1978), „Sve i ništa” (1982), „Grad u sivom” (1992). His only feature film, „Kuća na pijesku” (1985), is an unconventional contemplative film influenced by his short experimental films and characterized by the poetics of structuralism merged with cerebral—metaphysical allusions. He is the author of 12 books: 8 collections of poetry and 2 about film.
Martinac is deemed to be a complete mystery even amongst the most obscure filmmakers from former Yugoslavia. This Split—born poet has left a legacy of idealistic seeking for the “pure” cinema, as in his structuralist approaches in conjuring philosophical meditations on life and death.
He passed away in 2005.