Exhibit Opening: “Preoccupations” Presents the Work of Duke MFA Students

Oriel Window, Lacock Abbey | Pigment print from color negative | 18″ x 18″ | 2011. Photograph by Lisa McCarty.


A preoccupation; an absorption, engrossment, something that holds the attention.

Preoccupations, a public exhibition of works by members of the inaugural class of Duke’s MFA in Experimental and Documentary Arts (MFAEDA), will open on the Duke campus on April 19; the works represent the students’ preoccupations and the preoccupations of those around them. The exhibit is a follow-up to another recent exhibition of MFA student work, Occupations, which closed on April 13th.

Preoccupations opening
Thursday, April 19, 5–7 p.m.; refreshments provided
Corridor Gallery, East Duke Building, East Campus, Duke University
1304 Campus Drive, Durham, North Carolina

For a searchable map, click on http://www.maps.duke.edu

Preoccupations is made possible in part with generous support from the Department of Art, Art History and Visual Studies.

Participants and descriptions of their work:

Eric Barstow exhibits two video works that deal with the preoccupation of self-image.  Living within a society so driven by the images in films, television, the web, etc., has made many feel the need to ensure their own image is at its best. But what does this entail?

Marika Borgeson exhibits an exploration of paper and light.

Wolfgang Hastert exhibits selections from JUXTAPOSSE, a series of juxtaposed portraits of Duke University faculty and the MFAEDA student cohort.

Annabel Manning exhibits a video work exploring the train as eye, as surveillance, between Durham and Charlotte.

Lisa McCarty exhibits photographs taken at Lacock Abbey, the home of William Henry Fox Talbot. Both site and subject of the first photographic negative, the Abbey is hallowed ground in the history of photography and became a point of pilgrimage for McCarty.

Laurenn McCubbin exhibits a series of portraits in watercolors and in video titled Intimate, part of her larger work The Intimacy Project, a series of interviews with sex workers exploring the idea of “performative emotionality.” In the video, the object of the gaze looks back—the odalisque observes the viewer. Is the emotion being performed? Reflected? In this long portrait, the sex worker invokes a moment that might either be genuine or contrived.

Talena Sanders exhibits a video portrait of a man with a singular message for the Las Vegas art world.


For more information on the first exhibit of MFA student work, Occupations, click here.

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