Elian Mikkola – “SAARI”

Featured Member Works: Elian Mikkola – “SAARI” (2016)

SAARI is a film about longing and letting go. The Finnish word “SAARI’ means an island. The film is an experimental video collage that explores themes like safety and connection through a subjective memory. The intricacies of the desire to preserve a memory while also attempting to move forward from it serves as an inspiration to this film.

The original video was filmed in 2006 with Sony Camrecorder and re-photographed in 2016. Part of this work has also been filmed with a Bolex film camera and Polaroid camera.

Mikkola’s debut film SAARI (2016) has won multiple awards, including Filmpool’s SIFA 2016 Best Student Film, Best Technical Achievement, and it was selected to TIFF’s Canada’s Top Ten Film Festival in 2017.

Elian Mikkola (b.1990) is a queer filmmaker and media artist currently based in Montréal, Canada. Originally from Turku, Finland, Mikkola holds a BA in Journalism from Tampere University and an MFA in Media Production from the University of Regina, Canada. Their MFA graduation film Magdaleena premiered in 2020 at International Film Festival Rotterdam. Mikkola’s award winning debut film SAARI (2016) was selected to the student program of TIFF ‘s Canada’s Top Ten Film Festival in 2017.

They are currently working on two different new Saskatchewan based projects, both combining the experimental form, analog cinema and documentary.

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