MALCAH is a rare glimpse inside the jubilant world of renowned Jewish Folk Artist Malcah Zeldis. Discover how the longtime Tribeca resident went from being a struggling single parent to one of the most widely exhibited naïve painters of our time in a male dominated field. She’s the only living artist to have a solo exhibition by the Museum of American Folk Art—made all the more impressive considering she didn’t even pick up a brush until she was 38! This whimsical profile celebrates the life and work of a true American original.

  • Anthony Maranville
    Star Trek: Discovery, Monk, Mimi Vang Olsen: Pet Portraitist
  • Shana Stein
    Quentin Tarantino Presents: Hell Ride, Restaurant, Power
  • Project Type:
    Documentary, Short
  • Runtime:
    8 minutes 48 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    August 13, 2021
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Anthony Maranville

Writer/Director Anthony Maranville is currently co-writing an ongoing graphic novel series, Pandora, with Frank Miller. Prior to that he wrote for the Emmy, Saturn, and GLAAD Award winning Star Trek: Discovery, Short Treks and consulted on Picard. He also directed the award-winning documentary Mimi Vang Olsen: Pet Portraitist and is set to produce several upcoming martial arts pictures for Evolution Films.

Shana Stein is a producer and director, currently working on the hit TV shows Ghost, Raising Kanan and Force. Prior to working in the Power Universe, Shana produced the Independent Spirit Award Nominated Restaurant and Quentin Tarantino Presents: Hell Ride, which premiered at Sundance. Shana and Anthony are married in Los Angeles with two kids and three poodle mixes.

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Director Statement

We first met Malcah while filming another documentary on famed Greenwich Village Pet Portraitist, Mimi Vang Olsen. Mimi said if we thought she was a character, we should meet her friend … and she wasn’t wrong. The minute you step into Malcah’s Tribeca apartment (which also serves as her gallery), you are transported into a world of wonder and whimsey.

Every inch is filled by her creations: Sculptures made of found objects, cultural touchstones and biblical epics painted on cardboard from the trash-room—all rendered in her unique, childlike self-taught style. It’s like stepping into her brain and seeing the world through her eyes.

No matter what hardships life has thrown her way, she has adapted and found a way to make brilliant, exuberant art out of it. She has lived life and made art on her own terms, following in the lost tradition of the American Maverick. We fell in love with her immediately think you will too.