Inspired by Lewis Hyde’s beloved classic The Gift: Creativity and the Artist in the Modern World, GIFT is a richly cinematic film, interweaving character-driven stories. On North America’s Pacific Northwest Coast, a young indigenous man undertakes the elaborate preparations for a potlatch – to make a name for himself by giving everything away. In Rome, Italy, a factory occupied by migrants is transformed into a living museum, protected by a barricade of art: a model of resistance and an invaluable gift. In the “pirate utopia” of Burning Man, a mutant bumblebee art car distributes honey in a post-apocalyptic desert landscape. Meanwhile, in Auckland, New Zealand, artist Mingwei Lee prepares to launch Sonic Blossom – a “transformative gift” of song.
GIFT is a tribute to something that can’t be measured or counted, bought or sold. Exploring the parallels between artists’ work and a gift economy, it’s a reflection on the creative process, the reasons we “labour in service of our gifts”, and a celebration of the imagination.
The director, Robin McKenna, will be in attendance to follow the screening with a Q&A.
Tuesday, May 14
Doors 6:00 pm | Movie 6:30 pm
Advance tickets $10.50 HERE | $12.50 at the door
*Minors permitted in the balcony. Must be 19+ w/ID for bar service and main floor seating.
**Rio Theatre Groupons and passes OK. Please redeem at the door.
“A beautifully crafted film and such a thoughtful exploration of the idea of The Gift.”
(Faye Ginsburg, David B. Kriser Professor of Anthropology, New York University)
“GIFT is a poetic outlook on gift economies through art and cultural practices. It follows four storylines linked by creativity, generosity, resistance and defiance.” (Phi Centre)
“Above all, GIFT honours the creative impulse, and asks us to reflect on what art has to offer humanity, regardless of its market value.” (Brava.Media)
“GIFT presents us with a rare opportunity to escape the relentless logic of the market and to reclaim a little bit of our human freedom.” (Le Devoir)
“GIFT is [a film] worth watching, and a must-see if you are an artist.” (Laurette Folk, Compassion Anthology)