News & Events

2016 Archive of Documentary Arts Collection Award Winners

The Archive of Documentary Arts is pleased to announce the winners of the ADA Collection Awards. The ADA Collection Awards were established to diversify the ADA’s collection in order to better reflect the multitude of viewpoints and communities from which work is being made in the documentary arts today and will be offered annually.The following photographers will receive an honorarium of $4500.00 to print a body of work which will be added to the permanent collection of the Archive of Documentary Arts and available for use by students, faculty, and independent researchers in Duke University’s David M. Rubenstein Rare Book and Manuscript Library:

Debi Cornwall   |   Jeanine Michna-Bales   |  Paccarik Orue   |  Adam Reynolds   |  Jay Turner Frey Seawell


Paccarik Orue

Award for Documentarians of Color

Paccarik Orue

for the series El Muqui

Adam Reynolds

Award for Emerging Documentarian

Adam Reynolds

for the series Architecture of an Existential Threat

Debi Cornwall



Award for Women Documentarians

Debi Cornwall

for her collective work on Guantánamo Bay

Jay Turner Frey Seawell

Award for Innovation in the Documentary Arts

Jay Turner Frey Seawell

for the series National Trust & The Mall

Paccarik Orue

Award for Documentarians of The American South

Jeanine Michna-Bales

for the series From Darkness to Light: Seeking Freedom

on the Underground Railroad

William Gedney Exhibition at Howard Greenberg Gallery

Renée JacobsThe Archive of Documentary Arts is pleased to announce that the Howard Greenberg Gallery will be exhibiting William Gedney's photographs from February 5-March 19, 2016.

William Gedney: All Facts Eventually Lead To Mysteries will include the artist’s intimate portrayals of out-of-work coal miners and their families in rural Kentucky, hippie culture scenes from San Francisco, and his selections from his series "Night" comprised from his travels around the U.S.

Gedney was highly regarded in his lifetime, though his work was not well known beyond a small circle of colleagues and curators, which included photographers Lee Friedlander, Raghubir Singh, and John Szarkowski who curated Eastern Kentucky and San Francisco: Photographs by William Gedney (1968) at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. Gedney died of AIDS in 1989. The show at Howard Greenberg Gallery will include early work that hasn’t been exhibited in nearly 40 years.

The Archive of Documentary Arts is the repository for Gedney's archive which includes thousands of finished prints, but also work prints, contact sheets, negatives, journals, correspondence and handmade books which are currently on exhibit in the Rubenstein Library.

More information on William Gedney: All Facts Eventually Lead To Mysteries at Howard Greenberg Gallery

More information on Intimate Gestures: Handmade books by William Gedney at the Rubenstein Library

Image: William Gedney, Kentucky, 1964

New Acquisition: Renée Jacobs' Slow Burn: A Photodocument of Centralia, Pennslyvania

Renée JacobsThe Archive of Documentary Arts is pleased to announce its recent acquisition of Renée Jacobs' archive of her project Slow Burn: A Photodocument of Centralia, Pennslyvania. Slow Burn, first published in 1986 by University of Pennsylvania Press, chronicles Centralia’s demise from an underground coal mine fire and depicts a singular epic event in Pennsylvania history, representing the confluence of environmental, scientific, bureaucratic, and emotional tragedies. As an award winning photojournalist, Jacobs moved into a house in Centralia’s impact zone in 1983 to document, in photographs and interviews, the end stages of the tiny anthracite coal town’s unsuccessful fight to resolve the intractable problems that began with the mine fire in 1962 and culminated in the razing of the town by the federal government.

The archive consist of more than 200 rolls of 35mm black and white film, the accompanying contact sheets, more than 1,000 silver gelatin work prints, contemporaneous news articles, oral history interviews and vintage exhibition prints.  Additionally, the archives include maquettes for the original 1986 book and the 2010 re-issue, as well as prints with printer’s notations.

More information on the acquisition can be found here.

Press for Slow Burn: New York Times

Archive of Documentary Arts Photobook Club

American Photographs

Tuesday, February 23, 6:00-7:30 p.m.
Center for Documentary Studies Library, 1317 W Pettigrew Street, Durham, NC 27707

Join us for the third meeting of The Archive of Documentary Arts Photobook Club where we will be discussing American Photographs by Walker Evans.

Book Discussion Group, Free and Open to the Public, byo beverage and/or snack

The book is on reserve for public use prior to the meeting in the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library.

Examine these editions for yourself in person, and/or read more about the book in The History of the Photobook Volume I or The Book of 101 Books: Seminal Photographic Books of the Twentieth Century.

Read more about Evans & American Photographs on the NY Times Lens Blog, Time's Lightbox, or The Metropolitan Museum of Art's website.

**Please note – Discussion will take place at the Center for Documentary Studies while the books themselves are held at The Rubenstein Library.**

Contact: Lisa McCarty, Curator of the Archive of Documentary Arts | lisa.mccarty@duke.edu

2016 Rubenstein Visiting Artist: Richard Ashrowan

Public Screening + Q&A:

January 27, 2016, 7:00-8:30 pm, Full Frame Theater, 320 Blackwell St #101, Durham, NC  Directions

Nate Larson

In January 2016, the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library will welcome Richard Ashrowan for a month-long residency.

Richard Ashrowan is a moving image artist who lives and works in the Scottish Borders. He works primarily with 16mm film and HD video, creating short single channel films, immersive video installations and live multi-projector performance experiments. His works are exhibited at artist-led spaces, galleries and film festivals around the world. In addition to his practice, he is currently close to finishing a practice-led PhD 'Alchemical Catoptrics of the Moving Image', at Edinburgh College of Art / Edinburgh University. He also curates experimental film and moving image works, as Creative Director of Alchemy Film and Moving Image Festival in Scotland and at Summerhall in Edinburgh.

Ashrowan will be in residence at the Rubenstein Library January 10-February 8, 2016.  During this time, Ashrowan will meet with scholars, students and staff from across the academic disciplines at Duke and conduct his own research. There will be a public screening of Ashrowan's work  at the Full Frame Theater on January 27 from 7:00-8:30 pm.

The event is free and open to the public. Ashrowan’s visit is jointly organized and sponsored by the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, the Center for Documentary Studies, the Master of Fine Arts in Experimental and Documentary Arts Program, & the Office of the Vice Provost for the Arts of Duke University.


DukeArts
Duke MFA EDA
CDS at Duke University


Image below by Richard Ashrowan | Still from: Speculum, 2014

Nate Larson & Marni Shindelman

2015 Archive of Documentary Arts Collection Award Winners

The Archive of Documentary Arts is pleased to announce the winners of the inaugural ADA Collection Awards. The ADA Collection Awards were established to diversify the ADA’s collection in order to better reflect the multitude of viewpoints and communities from which work is being made in the documentary arts today and will be offered annually.The following photographers will receive an honorarium of $4500.00 to print a body of work which will be added to the permanent collection of the Archive of Documentary Arts and available for use by students, faculty, and independent researchers in Duke University’s David M. Rubenstein Rare Book and Manuscript Library:

Ben Alper   |   Sarah Christianson   |   Eliot Dudik   |  Rebecca Sittler   |  Wendel White

Wendel White

Award for Documentarians of Color

Wendel White for the series Manifest

Eliot Dudik

Award for Emerging Documentarian

Eliot Dudik for the series Road Ends in Water

Rebecca Sittler

Award for Innovation in the Documentary Arts

Rebecca Sittler for the series All the Presidents' Men

Sarah Christianson

Award for Women Documentarians

Sarah Christianson for the series

When the Landscape is Quiet Again:  North Dakota’s Oil Boom

Ben Alper

Award for Documentarians working in North Carolina

Ben Alper for the series Index of Walking

Sarah Hoskins

New Acquisition: Sarah Hoskins The Homeplace

The Archive of Documentary Arts is pleased to announce its recent acquisition of 250 silver gelatin prints by photographer Sarah Hoskins, from her series The Homeplace. The Homeplace documents the traditions and daily lives of African American communities in Kentucky's Inner Bluegrass region that were originally founded by freed slaves following the Civil War. As Hoskins states:

"Today many of the residents are descendants of the freed men and women who founded these hamlets. In some cases as many as six generations of a family have lived in succession on a "homeplace" in these communities. Some of these hamlets are prospering while the exisitence of others is tenuous."

The ADA also holds work from Hoskins project documenting Rosenwald Schools and is thrilled to welcome this addition to the collection.

For more information on the project and Hoskins visit: sarahhoskins.com

Press for The Homeplace: The Oxford American | NPR

New Acquisition: Looking at Appalachia

Looking at Appalachia

The Archive of Documentary Arts is pleased to announce that it will serve as the archival repository for Looking at Appalachia. Directed by photographer Roger May, Looking at Appalachia explores and celebrates the diversity of Appalachia by collecting images made by photographers working within the region. This crowdsourced image archive provides a counterpoint to historic and politically legislated representations of Appalachia, and currently includes 297 images selected from submissions over the last year. The ADA will collect digital files, prints from the travelling exhibition curated by Mr. May, field notes written by photographers, and other related ephemera.

For more information on the project, visit: lookingatappalachia.org

Recent Press: NY Times Lens Blog | National Geographic | The State of Things

Past Events

Duke Performances Presents:

Hiss Golden Messenger & William Gedney • 'Heart Like a Levee'

Hiss Golden Messenger

Friday, November 13, 8:00 PM at Reynolds Industries Theater &Saturday, November 14, 8:00 PM at Reynolds Industries Theater

Featuring Images from the William Gedney Photographs & Writings Collection

Heart Like a Levee is the latest installment in Duke Performances’ From the Archives initiative, which pairs artists with archival resources from Duke’s Rubenstein Rare Book and Manuscript Library to develop bold and ambitious new work.  In this case, Taylor’s cycle draws upon a group of photographs from 1972 by documentarian William Gedney (1932-1989), known for his uncanny ability to “catch fleeting moments of grace, joy, melancholy, and humor” (The New York Times).

Gedney’s visit to the Blue Diamond Mining Camp in Leatherwood, Kentucky generated the moving portfolio of photographs of everyday life that provides the source material for this collection of songs. Working alongside OBIE-winning stage director and designer Jim Findlay, Taylor offers a set of songs that address family, work, home, and love, as inspired by the photos’ subjects.

Reception, Artist's Talk, and Book signing for Aunties Exhibition

Aunties: The Seven Summers of Alevtina and Ludmila

Photographs by Nadia Sablin, 2014 Winner of the CDS/Honickman First Book Prize in Photography

November 12, 2015, 5:30-7:30PM | Rubenstein Photography Gallery

Nadia SablinNadia Sablin was chosen by renowned curator and historian Sandra S. Phillips to win the seventh biennial Center for Documentary Studies/Honickman First Book Prize in Photography for her series Aunties. The images document, as Sabin writes, “the lives of my aunts who live in Northwest Russia. Alevtina and Ludmila are in their seventies but carry on the traditional Russian way of life, chopping wood for heating the house, bringing water from the well, planting potatoes, and making their own clothes.”

Nadia Sablin, a native of Russia, is a freelance photographer based in Brooklyn, New York, whose work has been featured in such publications as the New York Times, the Guardian, the Moscow Times, Slate, and American Photo, among others. Her photographs have been seen in solo and group exhibitions across the U.S.

The CDS/Honickman First Book Prize in Photography is awarded by the Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University and the Honickman Foundation. Book available through Duke University Press Fall 2015.

2015 Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel Visiting Artist: Nate Larson

Reception & Artist's Talk:

November 5, 6:00-8:00 pm, Center for Documentary Studies, 1317 W. Pettigrew St, Durham, NC | Directions

Nate Larson

In October 2015, the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library will welcome Nate Larson as the second Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel Visiting Artist. Named in honor of Dr. Diamonstein-Spielvogel, a prolific author, interviewer, curator, and champion of the arts, this new artist-in-residence program provides an extended opportunity for an artist to study and engage with archival, manuscript and other special collections in support of developing a new body of creative work. 

Nate Larson is a contemporary artist working with photographic media, artist books and digital video. His projects have been widely shown across the US and internationally as well as featured in numerous publications and media outlets, including Wired Raw File, The Picture Show from NPR, Slate, CNN, Hyperallergic, Gizmodo, Buzzfeed News, Vice Magazine, the New York Times Lens Blog, Flavorwire, the BBC News Viewfinder, Frieze Magazine, the British Journal of Photography, The Washington Post, and Art Papers. His artwork is included in the collections of Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, the Orlando Museum of Art, Portland Art Museum, the Museum of Fine Arts Houston, the Center for Photography at Woodstock, and the Museum of Contemporary Photography Chicago. Additionally, Larson holds a full‐time academic appointment in the photography department at Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore and chaired the 2014 national conference of the Society for Photographic Education.

Larson will be in residence at the Rubenstein Library October 26-November 22, 2015.  During this time, Larson will meet with scholars, students and staff from across the academic disciplines at Duke and conduct his own research. Larson will give an Artist’s Talk about his work to date at the Center for Documentary Studies on November 5 from 6:00-8:00pm.

The event is free and open to the public and made possible through the generous support of Dr. Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel.Larson’s visit is jointly organized and sponsored by the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, the Center for Documentary Studies, and the Master of Fine Arts in Experimental and Documentary Arts Program at Duke University.

Image below by Nate Larson & Marni Shindelman from the series Geolocation

Nate Larson & Marni Shindelman

Archive of Documentary Arts Photobook Club

The Sweet Flypaper of Life

Tuesday, September 29, 6:00-7:30 p.m.
Center for Documentary Studies Library, 1317 W Pettigrew Street, Durham, NC 27707

Join us for the third meeting of The Archive of Documentary Arts Photobook Club where we will be discussing The Sweet Flypaper of Life by Roy DeCarava and Langston Hughes.

Book Discussion Group, Free and Open to the Public, byo beverage and/or snack

The book is on reserve for public use prior to the meeting in the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library.

Examine these editions for yourself in person, and/or read more about the book in The History of the Photobook Volume II or The Book of 101 Books: Seminal Photographic Books of the Twentieth Century.

Read more about DeCarava on NPR and decarava.org

**Please note – Discussion will take place at the Center for Documentary Studies while the books themselves are held at The Rubenstein Library.**

Contact: Lisa McCarty, Curator of the Archive of Documentary Arts | lisa.mccarty@duke.edu

Archive of Documentary Arts Photobook Club

Henri Cartier-Bresson, The Decisive Moment

Tuesday, May 5, 6:00-7:30 p.m.
Center for Documentary Studies Library, 1317 W Pettigrew Street, Durham, NC 27707

Join us for the third meeting of The Archive of Documentary Arts Photobook Club where we will be discussing Henri Cartier-Bresson's, The Decisive Moment.

Book Discussion Group, Free and Open to the Public, byo beverage and/or snack

The book is on reserve for public use prior to the meeting in the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library.

Examine these editions for yourself in person, and/or read more about the book and Cartier-Bresson online at the links below:

Time    The Guardian   Magnum Photos

**Please note – Discussion will take place at the Center for Documentary Studies while the books themselves are held at The Rubenstein Library.**

Contact: Lisa McCarty, Curator of the Archive of Documentary Arts | lisa.mccarty@duke.edu

Duke Performances Presents: Jenny Scheinman + H. Lee Waters • 'Kannapolis: A Moving Portrait'

William Tyler

Friday, March 20, 8:00 PM at Reynolds Industries Theater

Featuring Footage from the H. Lee Waters Film Collection

Duke Performances has commissioned Jenny Scheinman, an acclaimed composer, singer, and violinist, to make an original live score set to 70-year-old archival footage taken by the late North Carolina filmmaker H. Lee Waters. Scheinman and her musical sidemen — Robbie Fulks and Robbie Gjersoe — will create a soundtrack of new folksongs, fiddle music, and field sounds to accompany Waters’ fascinating footage of the Piedmont in the early ’40s, masterfully stitched together by filmmaker Finn Taylor. “Scheinman [has] a distinctive vision of American music, suffused with plainspoken beauty and fortified all at once by country, gospel, and melting-pot folk, along with jazz and the blues” (New York Times).

During the ’30s and ’40s, H. Lee Waters made more than 200 films capturing life in the Piedmont, which he called Movies of Local People. The full slate of Waters’ movies — the only such collection from an itinerant American filmmaker of the era — are now housed at Duke’s Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library. Scheinman, who recently recorded The Littlest Prisoner for Sony Masterworks with Bill Frisell and Brian Blade, employs her formidable musical ingenuity to make a stirring new presentation drawing from this rich artifact of American cinema.

Archive of Documentary Arts Photobook Club

Helen Levitt, A Way of Seeing

Tuesday, January 27, 6:00-7:30 p.m.
Center for Documentary Studies Library, 1317 W Pettigrew Street, Durham, NC 27707

Join us for the second meeting of The Archive of Documentary Arts Photobook Club where we will be discussing Helen Levitt's first photobook, A Way of Seeing.

Book Discussion Group, Free and Open to the Public, byo beverage and/or snack

Three editions are on reserve for public use prior to the meeting in the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library

Examine these editions for yourself in person, and/or read more about the book and Ms. Levitt online at the links below:

NY Times Lens Blog  The Telegraph  Fraenkel Gallery

**Please note – Discussion will take place at the Center for Documentary Studies while the books themselves are held at The Rubenstein Library.**

Contact: Lisa McCarty, Curator of the Archive of Documentary Arts | lisa.mccarty@duke.edu

James Longley Exhibit & Film Screenings at the Power Plant Gallery

James Longley

Kabul, Afghanistan

December 9 - February 20, Power Plant Gallery

Panorama photographs by Oscar nominated filmmaker, and 2010 Barbaralee Diamonstein-Speilvogel Visiting Filmmaker, James Longley, explores the Jada-e-Maiwand neighborhood of old Kabul, twenty years after the Afghanistan civil war. Free and open to the public.

Film Screenings:
Friday, January 16, 2015, 7 p.m. | Gaza Strip; Portrait Of A Boy With A Dog

Wednesday, February 18, 2015, 7 p.m. | Screening Iraq in Fragments; Sari’s Mother; Q&A with James Longley to follow.

Please visit powerplantgallery.org/kabul-afghanistan for more information

Duke Performances Presents: William Tyler's Corduroy Roads

William Tyler

Nightly Performances November 20-23

Featuring images from Alexander Gardner's Photographic Sketch Book of the Civil War & George N. Barnard's Photographic Views of Sherman's Campaign

Duke Performances has commissioned the exceptional solo guitarist William Tyler — who occupies the musical intersection of John Fahey and Bill Frisell — to make a new performance that reflects on the lingering legacy of the Civil War. In the piece, Corduroy Roads, Tyler creates a soundtrack to accompany extraordinary photographs of the Civil War taken by George Barnard and Alexander Gardner, 150-year-old artifacts that have recently been acquired by the Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library. Tyler’s piece offers a contemporary narrative on the distant past, as Barnard and Gardner’s photographs are joined with images of the South through the Great Depression and into the present day.

Rubenstein Library Welcomes Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel Visiting Filmmaker & Visiting Artist

In October, the Rubenstein Library will host the third Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel Visiting Filmmaker and the inaugural Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel Visiting Artist.

Stanley Neleson

This year’s filmmaker is award-winning director/producer, Stanley Nelson. Nelson is the director and/or producer of over a dozen documentary films, principally highlighting the life and history of African Americans. His most recent release is the acclaimed Freedom Summer, and this past summer he was recognized as a 2013 National Humanities Award winner. Nelson will visit Duke’s campus from October 16-18 and will engage in a public conversation with Dr. Diamonstein-Spielvogel on his career and work at the Nasher Museum of Art on October 17 at 6:00 pm, reception to follow.

Steve RodenAs the inaugural Diamonstein-Spielvogel Visiting Artist, internationally known sound and visual artist, Steve Roden will participate in a three-week residency in the Rubenstein Library from October 13-30. Roden’s residency will include extensive research in the Rubenstein Library collections to inform his process of artistic creation. Roden will also engage in two public events during his visit. On October 18 at 6:30 pm, he will present an overview of his work entitled “Ragpicker” at the Full Frame Theater at American Tobacco Campus. And on October 23 at 5:00 pm, he will share his experiences working in the Rubenstein Library at the Center for Documentary Studies.

All of these events will be free and open to the public and are made possible through the generous support of Dr. Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel. They are additionally co-sponsored by the Archive of Documentary Arts, Center for Documentary Studies, Franklin Research Center, Program of Arts of the Moving Image and Master of Fine Arts and Experimental and Documentary Arts Program.