Bert Haanstra was born in 1916 in Holten in the Netherlands. He became a professional filmmaker in 1947. He received international acclaim for his short documentary film Mirror of Holland, which was awarded the Grand Prix for a short film at the Cannes festival in 1951. Throughout his carrier, Haanstra has won over a hundred film awards.
As a director, he holds a mirror to the society, reflecting also on the material most mirrors are made of – glass in his film of the same name Glass: a short, Oscar-winning film made at glassworks in Leerdam and Schiedam that shows the work of glass blowers. His other films include a fresh and humorous montage entitled ZOO (Haanstra draws striking similarities between humans and animals).
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