Resident Artist Dispatch: Mariah Dunn


Filmmaker Mariah Dunn enjoyed a warm stay in Wilmington, NC as part of the Cucalorus Summer Residency program. Before becoming interested in film, Mariah worked in Manhattan at Fuse TV and The Martha Stewart Show. She eventually found herself in Portland, OR where she fell in love with documentary filmmaking and teaching. Mariah recently earned a MFA from The University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Her films have screened at a variety of festivals throughout the country including, Cucalorus Film Festival, Portland Oregon Women’s Film Festival, BolderLife Film Festival, The Loft Film Festival, and more.

Filmmaker Mariah Dunn

Filmmaker Mariah Dunn

Traveling in from Greensboro, Mariah visited many of the Port City’s hot spots (Airlie Gardens, Greenfield Lake, the Historic District, etc.) to enhance her new project. Here’s a preview of Mariah’s work during her stay…


In-Camera Photograms

In-camera Photograms
Objects, such as spanish moss, sand, or plants, found in each location were collected and inserted into the camera. The objects sit on the film emulsion and create a photogram of sorts while simultaneously capturing the scene being photographed. The result that is exposed on the 35mm film is both a macro and micro image that defines the space. These images will be strung together in a crude stop-motion animation to give the viewer a sense of exploring the location.

Element - "Sand"

Element – “Sand”

Element - "Spanish Moss"

Element – “Spanish Moss”

Element - "River Plant"

Element – “River Plant”


About the Residency Program

The Residency provides housing for artists at the festival’s growing creative compound in downtown Wilmington. Artists live at one of the festival’s three residency buildings – the Pink House, Yolohaus, and the Cottage – and are nurtured by the creative team that plots and schemes the annual film festival in downtown Wilmington – one of the best small cities in America for filmmakers. All resident artists are given free housing and administrative support from staff along with access to the microcinema for events.

Special consideration is given to filmmakers whose projects are capitalizing on the unique assets found in Wilmington – ranging from the river to the ocean and including the rich array of humanoids who live here. The Residency is intended to be a catalyst for new work and for discovering new ways of creating. Cucalorus gives people the freedom to take risks!

To learn more about the residency, or to apply for the next session, email Or feel free to give us a shout at 910-343-5995.