There are great double acts in film direction and musical scoring: Hitchcock-Herrmann, Fellini-Rota, Leone-Morricone. It is often hard to imagine the image without the music and vice-versa.
You can throw Roman Polanski and Krzysztof Komeda into that mix.
KK was one of the most important jazz musicians to have worked in film. In his short life, he scored 38 films from 1958-1969, most noticeably his collaboration with Polanski: Knife In The water, Cul-de-sac, Fearless Vampire Killers and Rosemary's Baby.
How to describe his qualities? The uniqueness of his Polish slavic influences, married with the post-war developments in jazz (most noticeably improvisation, John Coltrane) and the ability to distil this in a bold, fresh manner for the cinematic frame. I really like the symbiotic relationship between his jazz and film music. The 1964 album Astigmatic, announced a cool, more abstract approach and can be seen as a forerunner of the ECM sound of Manfred Eicher.
It's a pity there is no English-language book about Komeda. My old Professor at film school, Richard Dyer, has recently penned the definitive book on Nino Rota and hopefully someone will take up the challenge of putting Komeda's life and music into words.
As a visual artist, I've created 4 drawings as a homage to his work. They have been improvised with the music as a backdrop. I'm responding to the emotional and psychological qualities of sound and re-imagining this as a filmic image.
Homage to Svantetic is a pictorial reference to the mysterious death of Komeda in 1969 at the age of 37. He was involved in an accident in the States, possibly as a result of high-jinks with a compatriot. Not being insured, Komeda who had originally trained as a medic, travelled back to Poland for treatment and died shortly after from a haematoma.
Official Homepage of Krzysztof Komeda
Virtual Museum of Krzysztof Komeda