Uncanny: The Dolls of Mariana Monteagudo

With The Film-Maker Project / PBS South Florida award-winning film “Uncanny: The Dolls of Mariana Monteagudo”, by documentarian Elaine Minionis, the Coral Gables Museum launches The Documentary Dock, a monthly series of documentary films streaming. This project offers our audience the unique opportunity to watch, from home, amazing movies that are currently not in the public domain. They are always introduced by conversations between the directors/artists/producers and the curator of the series, the Museum’s Chief Curator Yuneikys Villalonga.

Starting on the weekend of Friday, May 29th, and running once a month, the films will be available for streaming during a whole weekend, from Friday, 6:00 pm to Sunday, 9:00pm. Even though the scope of the selection is international, the first edition of the series honors the Museum’s long-term commitment to showcasing and nurturing local art and culture. “Uncanny…” tells the story of Boca-Raton-based artist, Mariana Monteagudo through the eyes of award-winning filmmaker Elaine Minionis.

On the Film:

“Uncanny, The Dolls of Mariana Monteagudo” is a short documentary about renowned Venezuelan visual artist, Mariana Monteagudo, currently residing in Florida; her creative process and her inspirations behind her intriguing, eerie and culturally-hybrid doll sculptures, all made of repurposed materials that were originally waste. In the film, we join Mariana into dumpster diving and visiting local thrift shops; closely following her through the creation of her new doll series “Uncanny”, where topics like capitalism, immigration, consumerism, maternity, contemporary art, terror and upcycling are explored.

Coming from a strong family tradition of ceramists in Venezuela, Monteagudo loves giving a second life to objects that are discarded by our society. Like a waste picker, she walks around neighborhoods to salvage gems from people’s bulk trashes, rescuing textiles or baseball balls, plastic bottles of orange juice, or an old unkempt teddy bear. She also visits local thrift stores looking for unwanted objects that may excite her creativity, contributing with the processes of upcycling and reuse. To her, everything has potential for inspiration and hybridism, and that’s the way she lives her life: continuously seeking, always resuscitating abandoned things, permanently combining and thinking ahead of time and placing her faith into the most unimagined creations. When the dolls are finished, everything makes sense, and a magical symbiosis is initiated, resulting in the reflection of today’s globalized and interconnected world.

Produced by a one-woman-band crew / The Lunch Box Studio

Duration: 28″:36′

On Director Elaine Minionis:

Elaine Minionis (Caracas, Venezuela, 1980) is a Literature graduate from the Universidad Católica Andrés Bello in Caracas. Her dual inclination towards images and words, at a very early age, prompted her to take courses on Documentary Photography and Filmmaking in Venezuela, and in the University of the Arts, London, UK. In 2008 she went to pursue Documentary Filmmaking at the New York Film Academy.

Minionis has been involved in numerous artistic projects where she has gained experience as a photographer and producer, as well as grown a significant network within the film and entertainment industry. These include 20th Century Fox production, Ellipsis, in Venezuela; Brooklyn-based production company Flicker Flacker Films, New York City; History Channel documentary The Naturalized; and Discovery Networks Latin America/US Hispanic.

In 2011, Minionis co-founded The Lunch Box Gallery; a cutting edge, creative space devoted to artistic contemporary photography in the Wynwood Art District of Miami. The gallery closed in 2014, and she continued working in commercial photography with The Lunch Box Studio. Parallel to this project, Elaine pursues her own stories and documentaries; being the latest one, “Uncanny: The Dolls of Mariana Monteagudo”.

To learn more about the film, visit: https://www.uncannydollsfilm.com/

A conversation with
Documentarian Elaine Minionis and Visual Artist Mariana Monteagudo

This event is made possible thanks to the generous sponsorship of