Director, writer and producer Irene Gutierrez was born in Ceuta, a Spanish city located in the North of Africa, at the border between Europe and Morocco. She is a Berlinale Talents (2014) fellow and a Spanish General Consulate of New York Fellow in film (2015). Her first feature film debut, “Hotel Nueva Isla” (2014), produced by El Viaje Films, was premiered at the Rotterdam International Film Festival and was part of the MoMA Documentary Fortnight 2015, among another 40 international film festivals. It received many support grants (Sundance Grant for Development, ARTE, Cinergia, ICAA, Ibermedia), garnered rave reviews (Variety, Hollywood Reporter, Cahiers du Cinema Spain, The L Magazine, Criterion Cast) and won many awards including Best Documentary Award from New Orleans IFF, FICALI (Colombia), Docs DF (Mexico), Miradas Doc (Spain), and a Jury Prize in Jeonju IFF (South Korea) and Austin Las Americas, among others.
She received her MFA in Fine Arts & Cinema Studies with high honors. José Alayón, with El Viaje Films, produced her master’s thesis in documentary film, “Border Diaries” in 2012. Since then they have been working together.
She is the co-director and coordinator of the MA in Documentary Film Production at the EICTV (Cuba), the film school from where she graduated in 2004. Since then she has taught documentary filmmaking in Cuba, NY, Colombia and Spain.
Her films and research try to link the intimate portrait and the historical dimensions of her characters, pushing the boundaries of the traditional storytelling in order to range across the landscape as an expression of the political tension between individuals and nation.