Today we’d like to introduce you to Rosita Lama Muvdi.
Every artist has a unique story. Can you briefly walk us through yours?
I grew up in Barranquilla, Colombia, where I was first introduced to filmmaking through my aunt Betty. As a communications student in college, she would shoot some of her projects at my grandmother’s house where I used to live as a kid and I remember being fascinated by the whole process. She would eventually teach me how to use a camera and even how to edit on VHS machines.
I had wanted to be an actress when I was younger and had acted in several plays in school. However, it wasn’t until I had a chance to direct those plays and several film projects of my own that I realized where my true passion was, so I decided to study film and television at Boston University.
After graduating, I moved back to Colombia where I directed both commercial and narrative work. But after a few years, I felt the need to tell stories that felt true to who I was and my experiences in an environment that would allow me to truly bare myself artistically without the looming fear of judgment that came from truly expressing oneself in such a conservative society. It was at that point that I decided to come to LA and get my MFA in Directing at the American Film Institute.
My time there proved to be beyond incredible. For the first time, I felt I was free to create in the nurturing environment I was craving with amazingly talented collaborators. More importantly, I was able to be vulnerable in my work and truly understand what stories I wanted to tell and why. As a writer/director particularly drawn to elevated genre, my stories explore themes related to that inner monster we all have inside of us and the victory that comes with revealing the truest form of who we are, even if it’s monstrous. My short film LA SIRENA, for example, is a psychosexual fairy tale that explores such themes. In it, a woman must surrender to her own inner monster to avenge her broken heart.
Currently, I am living in LA where I am getting ready to direct my first feature titled HER COLLECTION, a coming-of-age horror story, which is being produced by the amazing women at NOWHERE, a production and management company focused on breaking new voices in both film and TV.
Please tell us about your art.
I believe we all have a monster lurking deep inside us and, every now and then, an uncontrollable hunger forces us to surrender to that darkness and allow our inner monster to come out and play. For me, that monster was that thing inside me that was constantly fighting against societal expectations of who I was allowed to be, especially growing up in the small and conservative city of Barranquilla, Colombia. While young girls looked up to delicate princesses eager to find their prince charming, I was more fascinated with the villains. They were ambitious, driven, and had a darkness that defied any expectation of who or what women were supposed to be.
Furthermore, because conversations about sex were practically non-existent among women, I became increasingly curious about why the subject was so forbidden, especially since it was so celebrated amongst men. This disparity fueled my desire to further explore sexual themes with particular attention to female sexuality, which was so repressed at home. It took leaving to be able to explore that side of myself in an environment that would allow me to do so and for me, that place was Los Angeles.
As a writer/director, my work is inevitably infused with characters, especially women, who have this inner monster they ultimately surrender to because there is a victory in being able to express who we truly are, even if it hurts the ones we love the most. The darkness in female sexuality, the perversion in the mundane, and viscerally penetrating emotional imagery are themes that are ever-present in my work.
Choosing a creative or artistic path comes with many financial challenges. Any advice for those struggling to focus on their artwork due to financial concerns?
It’s tough. But ultimately, our passion for creating art helps us find a way to continue to do what we love, one way or another. However, it does come with sacrifices and it’s not the same for everyone. But regardless of what our financial circumstances are, I think one of the best things we can do is surround ourselves with people who believe in our passion and will be there to support us emotionally and artistically. Whether it’s someone who continues to encourage you no matter what you’re doing or someone who will offer constructive feedback when you need it, I think if you can find that community, big or small, that can provide that nurturing environment, then you’re going to be okay.
How or where can people see your work? How can people support your work?
Although some of my short films aren’t publicly available just yet, people can see most of my work online, specifically on my Vimeo page: https://vimeo.com/rowzeeta.
- Website: https://vimeo.com/rowzeeta
- Instagram: @RowZeeta
- Twitter: @RowZeeta
Chad Kotz – B&W BTS, Michael Chan – Color BTS