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Monica Peña

Miami, FL

Monica Peña is a Miami born and based filmmaker, writer, and artist advocate.  Her creative work has explored radical vulnerability, mystical realism, and sense of place.

Her debut feature film Ectotherms--an experimental narrative made with literally zero dollars and some friends--screened at the Miami Film Festival, New Orleans Film Festival, and Key West Film Festival, receiving praise from Variety, Filmmaker Magazine, and others.   

Monica was an inaugural Sundance Institute | Knight Foundation Fellow.  Her films, including her second feature Hearts of Palm, have also screened at Indie Grits, the Eastern Oregon Film Festival, and elsewhere.  Her work has been covered by national and local media, including VICE, the Miami New Times, and the Miami Rail.  She has been generously supported by Time Warner OneFifty, the Knight Foundation, WPBT-PBS, and more.

In turn, Monica supports other artists by connecting them with resources and opportunities through various roles at arts organizations in Miami and beyond.  She currently manages public programs, including Care and WaveMaker Grants, at Locust Projects.  Part of the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts’ Regional Regranting network, Locust Projects is an arts incubator and Miami’s longest running nonprofit alternative art space.

Monica is devoted to interrogating and reimagining both creative and administrative processes to dismantle barriers to access in the arts.  Her passion is giving artists who have been structurally and systemically excluded from the art world their first YES.