Ingrid Olivia Norrmén-Smith
Ingrid Olivia Norrmén-Smith is a researcher, writer, and filmmaker who tells stories about mental health, technology, and society. Her background is interdisciplinary. Over the last decade, she’s approached the ‘human experience’ from multiple spheres and at different levels of reduction: the neurobiological, the anthropological, the sociopolitical, the artistic. She is drawn to investigate barriers to resources and systemic-level crises, examine divergent ways of understanding and experiencing, celebrate the search for meaning, and highlight the idiosyncratic folly of human life. She has begun to use the medium of film to tell stories that incorporate the sensorial and emotional, validate different modes of experience, and legitimize ways of making meaning that go against the grain of empirical science.
Before her recent coupling of critical inquiry with creative expression, Olivia spent four years immersed in the study of the brain culminating in a degree in neuroscience. She lived in remote communities in Morocco, Cambodia, and Madagascar during a year-long Watson Fellowship examining local understandings of stroke symptoms and worked with a handful of people at a small NYC health technology startup trying to improve communication across linguistic and cultural barriers in medicine. Olivia is an alumnus of the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies and a current graduate student in the Division of Social and Transcultural Psychiatry at McGill University.