Italian director Michelangelo Antonioni, who became an icon of arthouse cinema with films such as "L'avventura" and "Blowup," died Monday in Rome. He was 94.
The enigmatic British-made drama "Blowup" (1966) took the Palme d'Or in Cannes, was Oscar-nommed for director and original screenplay and became a surprise international hit.
A striking visual stylist who excelled at depicting the alienation of modern life through sparse dialogue and long takes, Antonioni enjoyed a greater following with critics and intellectuals than with general audiences. Along with Federico Fellini, he helped turn postwar Italian film away from neorealism and toward a personal cinema of imagination.
Cinema has lost two masters this week, with Ingmar Bergman and Antonioni passing away on the very same day. It is a tragic week for the art of film. These two men have created some of the art forms most enduring masterpieces, and through their work, their spirit will live on.