Mat van Hensbergen

Date of birth
Date deceased


Mat van Hensbergen is a cameraman and a producer who also works as a sound technician, screenplay writer and editor. He studied at the Vrije Academie in The Hague and at the Film Academy in Amsterdam, where he graduated at the same time as Wim Verstappen and Nouchka van Brakel.

Since 1960 he has worked primarily as a cameraman for documentaries and feature films, and also does work television and theatre. He has experimented with 'direct cinema', a documentary style that is related to cinema verité, the basis of which involves the camera recording reality as directly as possible, according to the 'fly on the wall' principle. A portable camera was essential for this, as it allowed the cameraman to carry the camera on his shoulder. Van Hensbergen was one of the first in the Netherlands to own such a camera (Eclair).

He made a series about well-known Dutch people in this style for public broadcaster AVRO. He directed Frans Zwartjes, filmmaker (1998), for which he also wrote the screenplay and did the editing; Zwartjes provided the commentary himself. Van Hensbergen also made If I Were a Bird (1995) about Karel Appel and Jan Wolkers, Beeldend kunstenaar, schrijver (1993).

As a cameraman he worked on many Dutch films, including Het teken van het beest by Pieter Verhoeff, De mantel der liefde by Adriaan Ditvoorst, Toestanden by Thijs Chanowski and De Verloedering van de Swieps by Erik Terpstra. He started up his own production company, Mat Van Hensbergen Filmproductions, in Haarlem.


  1. 1966
  2. 1967
  3. 1968
  4. 1971
    Second camera
  5. 1974
  6. 1975
  7. 1985

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