Samantha Marie “La Alta” is an Experimental Filmmaker/Visual Artist. She began her career as a teenager at MTV in New York. It was there that she really began to appreciate the correlation between music and film. A vinyl collector for years, “La Alta” began DJing in 2001. Her passion for music inspires her filmmaking. “La Alta’s” visual style can be called collage filmmaking. Of Panamanian heritage, Samantha Marie thinks her style is an urban visual “mola,” an appliqué design technique used by the Kuna Indians, an island people off the Panamanian coast. Combining film, video, photos and hand painted/sewn film she creates layers of urban landscapes frequently synched to a soundtrack.
Though most of her work is visually stimulating, the intent of her films is to challenge the viewer to slow down their thoughts and pay attention to the many beautiful urban moments that occur daily. Having lived in New York, London, Los Angeles, Rio de Janeiro and now Buenos Aires, La Alta is constantly amazed by how quickly people move and how little they pay attention to their surroundings. The moments that she captures range from the mundane to the inconceivable and she is always grateful when she is able to capture them and more importantly share them. Her films develop organically; they have been inspired by songs, popular movies and even expressions. “La Alta” shoots almost daily using a still, video or super 8mm camera. She has countless moments on film, and once she has been inspired to create a film she digs through her archives, sometimes going back years, and begins to piece the moments together. Every moment has a texture, sound or color that is exposed when she begins making her collage with layers.
Samantha Marie “La Alta’s” work has screened in Berlin, Video Loop Barcelona, PS1, Riker’s Island Penitentiary, Mercedes Benz Fashion Week New York and on the IFC Channel. She hopes her work will be a “bridge” between the YouTube generation and the museum world and create a synergy between two groups that often drift apart.