SAD Mag is an independent Vancouver publication featuring stories, art, and design. Founded in 2009, we publish the best of contemporary and emerging artists with a focus on inclusivity of voices and views, exceptional design, and film photography.
"I'm not often one to share personal thoughts and feelings on social media, but through the fuzzy alias of Balto, I found myself learning to trust the validity of my work and become more comfortable with the idea of taking up space—particularly the insta space of 17-syllable cat captions."
“What could have been an endearing take on a Canadian legend’s life, or a delicate consideration of her influence and musical agenda, was instead an uncomfortable two hours spent watching corny choreography and forced humour.” Sorry to say, but some shows come as a disappointment.
Our last preview is here, and it's a good one. Writer Liam Siemens reviews Olivier Babinet's Swagger and Bart Simpson's Brasilia: Life After Design, with mixed feelings. But that's the fun of festival season; you can't love 'em all!
Cat Mills' short film FIXED! is one of our must-sees in this year's DOXA program. If you're invested in urban sustainability and community engagement, here's your film. “Repair Cafés bring together people from all walks of life, sticks them in the same room, and provides an excuse to help one another. People will be drawn to the cafés for financial reasons (it's free!), environmental reasons (keep items out of the landfill) and technical reasons (playing with technology—huzzah!), but regardless of the reasons, it is a safe place to get to know other people. It brings us together.
Another DOXA preview, just in time for the festival's opening night! Quick and to the point, this one is. Writer Ljudmila Petrovic reviews Dmitrii Kalashnikov's latest feature, The Road Movie, and muses over its portrayal of Eastern Europeans and the drama of Russia's icy roads. Dark and comedic? Yes, you can be sure of that.
Theatre of the absurd, here we come! Karen Hines' Mump and Smoot in Anything mixes horror, comedy, sentiment, and a few genres in between. Sounds like a show to see, if you ask me. “In verbal absurdities and physical slapstick, the show is bonkers—but also fascinating. The performance is like the game Cards Against Humanity; fishing for amusement amongst the nonsense.
It's that time of year again, folks! The stellar DOXA Documentary Film Festival is back with another finely curated line up—a cinematic smorgasbord, if you will. The fest doesn't officially start until May 4, but we've got a few previews in the works, to prime you all for what's to come. If you're at a loss for film picks, look no further! Our first two suggestions are here!
“Refuge does the important work of highlighting the uncertainty and suffering that comes with certain types of global circumstance and mobility. The piece was humorous and touching, entertaining in it's own right, but it also solicited from its audience a deeper empathy than perhaps many of us are comfortable getting in touch with. It is vulnerable to open oneself to the hardships that others cannot avoid, to become invested in outcomes over which we have little overall control—but it is worthwhile.”
“There is trauma and pain, there are memories of imprisonment and unimaginable torture; but there is laughter and dancing, there is family and love. The characters cope in whichever ways they can. The Refugee Hotel is poignant, heavy with pain and history, but it is at many times expertly funny and captures the dark humour that resonates best in the hardest of times.
"We had decided to take public transport and the length of the journey had made us both irritable. I sat, reading, cheek pressed against the window, foot tapping impatiently against the blue plastic. We missed our stop several times and had to run for the connecting bus. The skies hung heavy above our heads and my hand was pressed tightly in yours."
Canadian design wiz and newly minted documentary filmmaker Greg Durrell talks inspiration and process. “Instead of going to film school, making this documentary was my film school,” Greg says, laughing as he adds,” the whole thing was really fucking hard. Making a documentary feels like you’re aimlessly wandering through the dark.” Bet it's worth it, though. We can't wait to check out Design Canada and learn more about home-spun design history!
The search for an entirely unique theatrical experience is a worthy one, and we just may have found it in Ronnie Burkett's The Daisy Theatre, marionette masterpiece and musical delight. “The true value of any performance comes after the audience has been convinced to buy a ticket and show up; it’s how they feel in the moments after the lights fill the stage. I know instantly that I’m in good hands—literally—with Burkett.”