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We work to ensure collections are available and accessible to a diverse group of individuals. We strive to expand and strengthen avenues of access that are equitable and open. We balance this with the appropriate privacy restrictions. While we try to honor these limits requested by creators or donors of collections, we also seek to foster accountability and will conduct a through review of restrictions prior to accepting materials. We support teaching and access by campus users as well as welcome those that come from beyond our campus community.

A number of our collections are tagged with physical/technical restrictions due to the fragility of the original media, such as cassette tapes, 16mm film, and negatives among others. They are available to view either on the Digital Repository, or via use copies or digital copies in the Reading Room.

We recognize there are times when viewing the original media is warranted for research. In order to request access to the physical media or to inquire about any restrictions on collections in the Archive of Documentary Arts please email Caitlin Margaret Kelly, curator, at, or via phone at 919-681-7963, or you may reach out to J. Andrew Armacost, head of collection development for the Rubenstein Library.

Collection Awards

The Archive of Documentary Arts is pleased to announce our selection for the 2023 Collection Awards. Listed alphabetically:

  • Resita Cox, Freedom Hill (film)
  • David Fisher, The Round Number (film)
  • Holly Lynton, Meeting Tonight (photography)
  • Gabriella Mykal, Rape Play (film)

Thank you to everyone that submitted. We had over 80 submissions, and the final choice was difficult. All submissions were reviewed in full by staff in the Archive, who created a short list. We then enlisted faculty and staff across Duke to narrow it down to the final four.

Read more about the 2023 awardees here.