Ingrid tells the story of a prominent Dallas socialite/fashion designer in the 80s– who dropped her life and ran off to the woods in order to pursue a personal and creative one. She has since become a reclusive hermit and spends her time creating art out of rocks from the nearby creek. It is a never-ending project. Ingrid peels off the layers of this woman’s persona, questioning what would drive a successful Texas fashion designer to leave her profession and family to immerse herself in nature and become an entirely self-sufficient woman of the woods.
About the Filmmaker
Morrisa Maltz is an artist and filmmaker. She holds a BA from Columbia University where she majored in fine art. Her art, film, and performance work have been shown at MOCA, Los Angeles, as well as at the MCA, Santa Barbara and galleries internationally. In 2012, she created Mofones, an art product for iPhone that was sold at Urban Outfitters and museum stores worldwide. Her first film, The Caretaker, won Best Live Action Short at the 2012 LES Film Festival in New York. Her second short film, Odyssea premiered at Slamdance in 2014. Most recently, her music video for DYAN’s ‘Looking For Knives’ was featured on Creator’s Project/VICE. Morrisa’s first feature documentary, Ingrid, premiered at Slamdance 2018 and has screened at numerous top festivals including Atlanta Film Festival, Catalina Film Festival, and Bendfilm Festival. She is currently in production on a narrative/doc hybrid feature, The Unknown Country, a 2018 AFS grant recipient.
I really wanted the film to have the feeling of what it’s like being on her property. The pace and visuals were integral to this. I was also aiming for the viewer to have space within the film to have their own existential experience and contemplate their own life choices. I wanted the audience to talk about it afterwards and encourage a philosophical discussion. This meant that we spent a lot of time out in nature (sometimes spending days filming ants and spiders) by Ingrid’s property, trying to make really visual imagery that matched the feeling of the world Ingrid inhabits. It also meant that I wanted a lot of the footage of Ingrid, herself, to be meditative, her meticulously working mixed with cuts to rapturous long nature shots.
I enjoy watching talking head documentaries but that was not what I wanted for this project. I wanted it to feel more like a visual poem. My background is as a visual artist, so the decision was an artistic one, which happened to also match up well with Ingrid’s comfort level. It was far easier to film her with a fly-on-the-wall vérité style, and save more of the interview work that we needed for later in the process. The film is shaped by how I got to know her. The camera is viewing her farther away at the beginning and moves much closer to her towards the end.