The Government expresses its condolences for the death of Agustí Villaronga, winner of the 2011 Ramon Llull Prize

Jan 23, 2023 | Current affairs, Featured, Thursday Daily Bulletin, Tradition

The President of the Balearic Islands, Francina Armengol, along with the other members of the Government, would like to express their condolences for the death of Agustí Villaronga, winner of the 2011 Ramon Llull Award in recognition of his film career.

Death of Agustí Villaronga

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Born in Palma in 1953, he graduated in art history and moved to Barcelona at a very young age, where he lived and developed his professional career until his death.

In his early days, he worked as an actor in Núria Espert’s company and also developed his creativity in other areas of cinema, such as costume design, art direction, decoration, styling and the making of fashion videos.

His first work as a feature film director dates back to 1984 when he directed Tras el cristal. With this film, the Mallorcan director won several awards, including the Grand Prize at the Barcelona Film Festival, the Mallorca Specialised Critics’ Prize and the Onda Prize in Madrid. In addition, this work was also presented in the Official Selection of the Berlin Festival in 1986.

With his second work, El niño de la luna (1988), Villaronga won three Goya awards. Years later came to El pasajero clandestino (1995) and 99.9 (1997), two films he directed on commission.

In the film El Mar (The Sea, 2000), the director settles in the universe of the Mallorcan poet Blai Bonet and chooses Mallorca as the setting for a film set during the Spanish Civil War. The film won the Manfred Salzgeber Award for innovation at the 2000 Berlin Film Festival.

In 2001, Agustí Villaronga received the National Film Prize, awarded by the Generalitat de Catalunya.

In addition to his feature films, the Mallorcan director has directed documentaries, such as Al Andalus, chosen for the INPUT Official Selection in Bristol.

In 2002 he shot Aro Tolbukhin, a three-way directing project with Isaac Racine and Lidia Zimmerman.

In 2010 Villaronga premiered Pa negre, based on the play by Emili Teixidor. The story is told through the vision of the childhood and adolescence of a lot living in the dark forties. With this latest work, Villaronga won the recognition of the Spanish Film Academy, which awarded him several Goya prizes, including Best Director, and the selection to compete for the Oscars. Shortly before that, the film won 13 awards out of 15 categories at the 2nd Gaudí Film Awards.

In 2011 he was awarded the Premio Nacional de Cinematografía and in 2012 he received other awards for his career, such as the honorary prize of the Festival Internacional de Cine y Artes Escénicas Gai-Lesbo y Trans de Bilbao (Zinegoak), the Jordi Dauder Award of the Muestra de Cine Latinoamericano de Cataluña, and a tribute from the Spanish Cinema Now in New York.

His latest films were Incierta gloria (2017), based on the novel of the same name by Joan Sales, and El vientre del Mar (2021), a theatrical adaptation of a novel by Alessandro Baricco about the tragedy and anguish of a shipwreck, which won six awards at the Malaga Film Festival.

A month ago, the Ministry of Culture and Sports awarded him the Medal of Merit in the Fine Arts.