When you think of gifting, are you more comfortable giving or receiving? Of course there are many different gifts, such as an item, the gift of a meal, money, the gift of time spent with somebody lonely. They come in many forms and we’re all excited to receive or give them away. It’s the thought of knowing that somebody took the time to make you feel special.
Documentary filmmaker Robin McKenna has made a documentary on the subject of ‘gift’. In the film she focuses on four subjects providing gifts for others from multiple locations, even as far as Rome. One such subject provides the gift of song through singing. Another subject builds a drivable honeybee and travels to the Burning Man event to give away honey juice. A young man from the Kwakwaka’wakw community in Alert Bay had saved up for 4 years to hold a Potlatch. The Potlatch believe that wealth is meant to be passed on and not horded. The last subject provided the gift of a flower to a stranger. He had organized a group to go out to the public on the streets and offer a stranger a flower.
With all four subjects in the film there is an exchange that makes the giver and the receiver elated and satisfied. Filmmakers are always trying to evoke emotion from the audience and this film is jam packed with examples of pure generosity for the sake of surprise, joy, happiness and recognizing that we are all neighbours on this planet.
If I’ve managed to spark you interest, then please go watch this film today while it premieres for the first time in Vancouver. It’s showing at the Rio Theatre at 6:30 and the Carlton Cinema in Toronto on Friday, May 17.
The filmmaker is extraordinary and has really compiled some stellar footage to express the idea of a ‘gift economy’. The film is also based on the book, The Gift: Creativity and the Artist in the Modern World, by Lewis Hyde.
Please go watch this film and support our amazing Canadian filmmakers while enjoying a magical story of pure generosity.
There will be a follow up article in the near future with the entire interview posted that fully explains the concept of the Gift.