Documentary filmmaker, director and producer Artemio Benki died in Paris on April 15, 2020, after a long illness, at the age of 53. Benki has lived and worked in Prague since the early 1990s. His feature-length documentary Solo about an Argentinian musician fighting mental illness was awarded the best Czech documentary at the Ji.hlava International Documentary Film Festival last year.
Benki was born on April 21, 1966 in Paris, where he began working for radio as a journalist at the age of 13. At the age of eighteen he joined the editorial of the L´Autre Journal, where he worked for example with the writer, playwright and director Marguerite Duras or the writer and photographer Hervé Guibert.
In 1989 he came to Prague for the first time to work on his short film about Roma refugees. In 1992 he settled in Prague and two years later he founded the production company Sirena Film. As a director he has made several short films, such as My Land and Island on the Roof, participated in the short films Moon Valley and Prague through the Eyes… As a producer, he has worked on a number of foreign films made in the Czech Republic. He also founded the distribution company Artcam Films, which brings independent foreign and Czech productions to Czech cinemas. As an actor, he starred in Petr Zelenka's The Buttoners.