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    Duke/CDS Alum Ryan White and Ben Cotner Awarded 2014 United States Artists Fellowship

    October 17th, 2014
    Ryan White and Ben Cotner. Photograph by Austin Hargrave.

    Ryan White and Ben Cotner. Photograph by Austin Hargrave.

    We are thrilled to congratulate Duke University and Center for Documentary Studies alumni Ryan White (’04) and Ben Cotner, who have been awarded a 2014 United States Artists Fellowship from the nonprofit arts organization United States Artists. The directing and producing duo were nominated for the prestigious $50,000 award following the success of their documentary film about California’s Proposition 8 revoking same-sex marriage, The Case Against 8, for which they were also awarded the Directing Award: U.S. Documentary at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival.

    As one of the largest grant-making organizations in the country providing direct support to artists, United States Artists honors innovative, accomplished artists at all stages of their careers, who are nominated by their peers and field experts for the quality, imagination, and enduring potential of their work. Fellows receive an award of $50,000 to support his or her practice and professional development, opening up exciting creative possibilities through the transformative power of unrestricted financial support.

    Ryan made his first short films at Duke’s Center for Documentary Studies, graduating with a CDS Certificate in Documentary Studies; he also studied filmmaking at the university’s Program in Arts of the Moving Image. His other documentary features have also received critical acclaim: Pelada, codirected by fellow certificate grads Gwendolyn Oxenham and Rebekah Fergusson, and Good Ol’ Freda, which premiered at SXSW and screened at numerous film festivals, including the Full Frame Documentary Film Festival, before a theatrical release in fall 2013.

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      Feature-in-Progress “180 Days: Hartsville” Continues Fresh Docs Series

      October 16th, 2014
      Film still from "180 Days: Hartsville."

      Film still from “180 Days: Hartsville.”

      On October 24, the Center for Documentary Studies and the Southern Documentary Fund will present a free screening of Jacquie Jones and Garland McLaurin’s 180 Days: Hartsville—the story of education reform efforts in a South Carolina town—as part of the Fresh Docs series, which features documentary works-in-progress. Following screenings, SDF director Rachel Raney moderates a conversation with the filmmaker in which the audience participates, providing valuable feedback.

      180 Days: Hartsville
      Friday, October 24, 7 p.m.

      Full Frame Theater, American Tobacco Campus
      320 Blackwell Street, Durham, North Carolina
      Directions 

      180 Days: Hartsville, which will premiere in spring 2015, spends a school year exploring what it takes for a small South Carolina town to meet the needs of its students during a massive reform effort. From the state’s largest corporation to one of its smallest Boy Scout troops, this community’s combined efforts have turned around test scores and graduation rates in less than five years. But is Hartsville a model or an outlier in the search for solutions to close the achievement gap? And what lessons can your community learn from Hartsville’s journey?

      Filmmaker Bios
      Jacquie Jones produces, writes, and directs documentary films. Her 2013 series for PBS, 180 Days: A Year Inside an American High School, won a Peabody Award, a Gracie Award, and was a finalist for the Media for a Just Society Award for best film and an IDA Award for best limited series. Her other work includes Africans in America: America’s Journey Through Slavery (also a Peabody winner), From Behind Closed Doors: Sex in the 20th Century and the series Matters of Race. Jones is the former executive director of the National Black Programming Consortium (NBPC), a media arts organization that funds, distributes, and produces public interest media for all platforms.

      Garland McLaurin works in television and film in the United States and abroad. He served as co-cinematographer on Wes Moore’s Coming Back documentary series highlighting veterans and on the award-winning documentary The New Black by filmmaker Yoruba Richen, which explores the fight for marriage equality in the African American community. Other professional credits include: field producing on CNN’s Black in America 4, producer/shooter for WAMU 88.5 American University, BET’s special Homecoming: The Killing of DJ Henry, and digital media work for Black Public Media, Time.com, the New York Times and National Geographic.

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        October 16: Events with Visiting Filmmaker Stanley Nelson Include Panel with SNCC Activist-in-Residence

        October 15th, 2014
        Filmmaker Stanley Nelson. Photo courtesy of Firelight Media.

        Filmmaker Stanley Nelson. Photo courtesy of Firelight Media.

        This year, Duke University’s Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel Visiting Filmmaker Series will feature the work of award-winning documentary filmmaker and 2013 National Humanities Medal recipient Stanley Nelson—screenings of four of his films culminating in a conversation between Nelson and Dr. Diamonstein-Spielvogel at the Nasher Museum of Art.

        During his visit to Duke, Nelson will also participate in a discussion on the challenges of documenting civil rights with former SNCC field secretary Charlie Cobb, the first activist-in-residence of the SNCC Legacy Project, a partnership between Duke and the history-changing civil rights organization. The conversation will be moderated by Center for Documentary Studies director Wesley Hogan and SUNY-Geneseo Professor Emilye Crosby

        Tuesday, September 16, 7 p.m.: The Murder of Emmett Till
        Richard White Lecture Hall, Duke University East Campus /1308 Campus Dr., Durham, North Carolina / Map

        Wednesday, September 24, 7 p.m.: Jonestown: The Life and Death of Peoples Temple
        Griffith Film Theater, Bryan Center, Duke University West Campus / 125 Science Dr., Durham, North Carolina / Map

        Thursday, October 2, 7 p.m.: A Place of Our Own
        Hayti Heritage Center, 804 Old Fayetteville St., Durham, North Carolina / Map

        Tuesday, October 7, 7 p.m. : Freedom Summer
        Durham Public Library, Main Branch / 300 Roxboro St., Durham, North Carolina / Map

        Thursday, October 16, 12:30–2 p.m.: Discussion with Stanley Nelson and Duke Activist-in-Residence Charlie Cobb, moderated by Wesley Hogan and Emilye Crosby
        Center for Documentary Studies / 1317 W. Pettigrew St., Durham, North Carolina / Map

        Friday, October 17, 6–7 p.m.: Conversation with Stanley Nelson and Dr. Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel, reception to follow / Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University/ 2001 Campus Dr., Durham, North Carolina

        Nelson’s films—including the critically acclaimed Freedom Riders, A Place of Our Own, Wounded Knee, and The Murder of Emmett Till, among many others—have illuminated both well-known and unknown narratives of African American history in America. In 2012, Full Frame Documentary Film Festival honored filmmaker Stanley Nelson with its annual Full Frame Tribute for his significant contribution to the documentary form. Click here to read a Full Frame interview with Nelson in 2012, discussing his distinguished career and his dedication to foster the next generation of documentarians.

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          Register Now! Upcoming Continuing Education Classes in the Documentary Arts

          October 15th, 2014
          Photograph taken at the 1984 State Fair in Raleigh, North Carolina.

          Photograph taken at the 1984 State Fair in Raleigh, North Carolina.

          Spaces remain in several upcoming Center for Documentary Studies Continuing Education classes, all with start dates in October. Classes are either held at the CDS or online through a virtual session. For more information, class details, and to register, click the class links below.

          Story Collecting: Methods and Practices in Modern History (Nora Wheatherby)
          Friday, October 17, 6-9 p.m / Saturday, October 18, 10 a.m-5 p.m. / Sunday, October 19, 10:00 a.m.-2 p.m.

          This weekend workshop will introduce students to the practice of oral history and the art of listening. The workshop will include discussion, listening exercises, guest speakers, and practice interviews.

          Documentary and the Three-Act Structure ONLINE | ON-SITE (Joshua Dasal)
          Online: Saturday, October 18, 1-5 p.m.
          On-Site: Mondays, October 20-December 8, 7-9 p.m.
          In this class, students will view and learn to dissect narrative films for the elements of traditional three-act structure and apply those lessons to their own work. Students will not only identify ways to adapt their subject matter to the appetite of a story-hungry contemporary documentary audience but also learn how to deliver commercially viable documentary films for today’s selective environment. *Please note that this course is offered in an online format as well as an on-site format. See links above for details.

          The Short Subject Audio Documentary ONLINE (Sarah Reynolds)
          Wednesdays, October 22-December 3, 7-9 p.m.
          Four to six minute, “feature length” radio stories have become a de facto standard for independent producers. In this class, students will produce a complete story that runs under six minutes, with a varied mix of voice, ambient sound, and narration. *Please note that this course is offered in an online format and will not physically meet at CDS but will instead take place in a virtual session.

          The Short Subject, Photography (Bryce Lankard)
          Thursday, October 23, 7-9 p.m / Saturday, October 25, 10 a.m-5 p.m. / Thursday, October 30 7-9 p.m.
          In this workshop, we’ll approach a time-limited subject as a communal project in order to gain a deeper sense of story. Each student will find his or her own angle, and in combination, we’ll collect a well-rounded, multifaceted portrait. *Please note that this semester’s class will document the North Carolina State Fair, which takes place October 16–26. Class will meet at CDS on Thursday, October 23 from 7–9 p.m.; at the fairgrounds on Saturday, October 25 from 10 a.m.–5 p.m.; and at CDS on Thursday, October 30 from 7–9 p.m.

          Writing Documentary Nonfiction ONLINE (Andrea Applebee)
          Thursdays, October 23-December 4, 7-9 p.m.
          This six-week workshop is designed to explore strategies for composing a variety of documentary nonfiction, including journalistic pieces, photo essays, and creative nonfiction. The workshop will become a collaborative community in which participants will explore diverse writers, discuss various writing styles, discover their own literary voice, and workshop their own nonfiction essays with the goal of a completed work by the end of the course. *Please note that this course is offered in an online format and will not physically meet at CDS but will instead take place in a virtual session.

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            Fill Your Weekend With Free Events, October 17-19

            October 14th, 2014

            CDSEvents

            Friday, October 17:

            5-8 p.m. | Picture Books Book Signing with Invited Local Authors and Publishers
            Power Plant Gallery, American Tobacco Campus / 320 Blackwell Street, Durham, North Carolina

            6–7 p.m. | Conversation with Stanley Nelson and Dr. Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel, reception to follow
            Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University/ 2001 Campus Dr., Durham, North Carolina

            7:30 p.m. | Third Friday Screening of 1971*
            Full Frame Theater, American Tobacco Campus / 320 Blackwell St., Durham, North Carolina
            *Please Note: Event tickets have now sold out. There will be a last minute line at the venue to accommodate any last minute cancellations/no-shows.

            Saturday, October 18:

            6:30 p.m. | Ragpicker Presentation and Reception with Steve Roden
            Full Frame Theater, American Tobacco Campus / 320 Blackwell Street, Durham, North Carolina

            Sunday, October 19:

            3-4:30 p.m. | CDS Director Wesley Hogan Speaks at Durham County Library, SNCC and John Lewis
            Durham County Library, Main Branch / 300 North Roxboro St., Durham, North Carolina

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              October 17 and 24: Citizens Take On The FBI In Full Frame Screenings of “1971”

              October 14th, 2014
              Film still from "1971."

              Film still from “1971.”

              Johanna Hamilton’s feature documentary 1971 will screen for free at Full Frame Theater on October 17 as part of Durham’s Third Friday and on October 24 as part of the Full Frame Road Show presented by PNC. Immediately following the October 24 screening, there will be a Q&A with film director Johanna Hamilton and film subject Betty Medsger.

              The FBI was unaccountable and untouchable until 1971, when a group of ordinary citizens uncovered its illegal domestic spying programs. On March 8, 1971, The Citizens’ Commission to Investigate the FBI, as they called themselves, broke into a small FBI office in Media, Pennsylvania, took every file, and shared them with the American public. These actions exposed COINTELPRO, the FBI’s illegal surveillance program that involved the intimidation of law-abiding Americans and helped lead to the country’s first Congressional investigation of U.S. intelligence agencies. Never caught, forty-three years later, these everyday Americans—parents, teachers and citizens—publicly reveal themselves for the first time and share their story in the documentary 1971. View trailer.

              Friday, October 17, 7:30 p.m.
              Full Frame Theater, Power Plant Building, American Tobacco Campus
              320 Blackwell St., Durham, North Carolina

              Friday, October 24, 7:30 p.m.
              William and Ida Friday Center, UNC Chapel Hill Campus
              100 Friday Center Dr., Chapel Hill, North Carolina

              For more information, including other upcoming Full Frame programming, click here. Note that while Full Frame Third Friday and Road Show screenings are free, all attendees must reserve a ticket via Eventbrite, available at 9 a.m. on the day of the event.

              The Full Frame Documentary Film Festival is a program of the Center for Documentary Studies.

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                Steve Roden in Residence as Duke University’s Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel Visiting Artist

                October 9th, 2014
                Steve Roden. Photograph by Randy Yau.

                Steve Roden. Photograph by Randy Yau.

                This October, renowned multimedia artist Steve Roden (painting, drawing, sculpture, film, video, sound installation, text, and performance pieces) will be at Duke University as the inaugural Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel Visiting Artist, a new program that allows an artist to study and engage with archival, manuscript, and other special collections found at Duke in support of developing a new body of creative work. Roden’s visit is sponsored by Duke’s Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript LibraryCenter for Documentary Studies, and Master of Fine Arts in Experimental and Documentary Arts Program.

                During his October 13 to October 30 residency, Roden will be available to meet with scholars, students, and staff from across the academic disciplines at Duke and will offer two talks, both of which are free and open to the public:

                Ragpicker Presentation and Reception with Steve Roden
                An interactive discussion featuring images of Roden’s work and the objects, junk, and other detritus of everyday life that inspired them.
                Saturday, October 18, 6:30 p.m.
                Full Frame Theater, American Tobacco Campus
                320 Blackwell Street, Durham, North Carolina (Directions)

                Discussion and Reception with Steve Roden
                Roden will talk about how the archival collections, people, and experiences he engaged with at Duke have shaped his creative process.
                Thursday, October 23, 5 p.m.
                Center for Documentary Studies

                1317 W. Pettigrew St., Durham, North Carolina (Directions)

                Click here for more information about Roden and the Duke residency.

                Roden’s visit is being jointly organized and sponsored by the 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.

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                  October 14: First Meeting of the Archive of Documentary Arts Photobook Club

                  October 6th, 2014
                  Cover of Robert Frank's "The Americans."

                  Cover of Robert Frank’s “The Americans.”

                  The Archive of Documentary Arts at Duke University has established a photobook club to explore and appreciate photography books found in the school’s Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library. At the inaugural meeting on October 14, the group will discuss Robert Frank’s iconic photobook The Americans. Three copies of The Americans will be on reserve for public viewing at the Rubenstein Library prior to the meeting. For more information on the event and the book, click here. Archive of Documentary Arts Photobook Club meetings are free and open to the public.

                  Tuesday, October 14, 2014, 6-7:30 p.m.
                  Center for Documentary Studies Library
                  1317 W Pettigrew St., Durham, North Carolina (Directions)

                  First published in the United States in 1959, Frank’s photographs in The Americans create a complicated portrait of the time period it captured, examining both high and low strata of American post-war society. Says NPR’s Tom Cole, “there are few single works of art that have changed the direction of their medium. In 1959, [The Americans] dramatically altered how photographers looked through their viewfinders and the way Americans saw themselves.”

                  Please note that the discussion on October 14 will take place at the Center for Documentary Studies while the books themselves are held at Duke’s Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library. The inaugural meeting of the Photobook Club is part of the Click! Triangle Photography Festival.

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                    Documentary Photographers Alex Harris, Jen Kinney, and Pete Pin, “In Conversation With Pictures & Archives”

                    October 5th, 2014
                    Inuit snapshot (left), circa 1965, and an original photograph by Alex Harris (right), circa 1975, both from Tununak, Alaska. From Harris's “The Last and First Eskimos.”

                    Inuit snapshot (left), circa 1965, and an original photograph by Alex Harris (right), circa 1975, both from Tununak, Alaska. From Harris’s “The Last and First Eskimos.”

                    On October 22, a panel discussion exploring the use of historic archives by contemporary photographers, “In Conversation with Pictures & Archives,” will be held at the Center for Documentary Studies as part of the Click! Triangle Photography Festival*. The discussion will be grounded in the work of the panelists: photographers and documentarians Alex Harris, Jen Kinney, and Pete Pin, who have all made use of and been influenced by a community’s vernacular images, whether found in family photo albums, personal documents, or institutional archives. The panel will be moderated by Candice Jansen and Sarah Stacke. A reception on the CDS front porch will precede the discussion; both events are free and open to the public.

                    “In Conversation with Pictures & Archives” Panel Discussion
                    Wednesday, October 22, 5–7 p.m.: reception 5–5:30 p.m., panel 5:30–7 p.m.
                    Center for Documentary Studies
                    1317 W. Pettigrew St., Durham, North Carolina
                    Directions

                    NOTE: Jen Kinney is visiting Duke and CDS as the 2013 Lange-Taylor Prize winner; her solo exhibit at CDS, City Under One Roof, opens on October 27, with a reception and artist’s talk on Thursday, October 30, 6–9 p.m.

                    * Access the full list of events, exhibits, and receptions happening as part of the Click! Triangle Photography Festival here. All events are free and open to the public.

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                      October 30: Opening for “City Under One Roof,” Jen Kinney’s Lange-Taylor Prizewinning Project

                      October 4th, 2014
                      From "City Under One Roof," Whittier, Alaska, 2011–14. Photograph by Jen Kinney, 2013 Lange-Taylor Prize Winner

                      From “City Under One Roof,” Whittier, Alaska, 2011–14. Photograph by Jen Kinney, 2013 Lange-Taylor Prize Winner.

                      “The City of Whittier is a world entire. The great myth of Alaska—harsh but rewarding, distant, lawless, primal, pristine—is alive here in funhouse distortion. The town occupies a crescent moon of shoreline, ringed in mountains and bordered by the sea.” Jen Kinney, from City Under One Roof

                      On October 30, the Center for Documentary Studies will host an opening reception and artist’s talk for City Under One Roof, Jen Kinney’s solo exhibition on Whittier, Alaska, in which she uses photographs and writing to explore shared spaces in the tiny, remote outpost on Prince William Sound. Her Whittier project garnered Kinney, a graduate of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, CDS’s prestigious Lange-Taylor Prize in 2013; the $10,000 annual award supports documentary artists involved in ongoing fieldwork projects that rely on both words and images. Click here for a slideshow of images from the exhibit, on view through January 24, 2015.

                      City Under One Roof
                      Thursday, October 30: Reception, 6–9 p.m.; Artist’s Talk with Jen Kinney, 7 p.m.

                      Center for Documentary Studies
                      1317 W. Pettigrew St., Durham, North Carolina 

                      Kinney describes Whittier, sixty miles north of Anchorage, as “an unlikely crossroads of community and solitude, isolation and claustrophobia.” The only land access is via the longest rail and highway tunnel in North America. Ninety percent of the town’s population of just over two hundred people live in one fourteen-story building. Kinney’s ongoing project looks at “how the structures that people inhabit shape and order their lives; how, in turn, people construct, alter, and destroy spaces; and how these constant renovations to our physical world mirror changes in the stories that we tell ourselves, and how we structure our lives to these stories.”

                      To read some of Jen Kinney’s writing for City Under One Roof, see the Winter 2014 issue of Document.

                      NOTE: During her visit to CDS, on October 22 Kinney will participate in a panel with fellow documentary photographers Alex Harris and Pete Pin on the use of historic archives in contemporary photography.

                      Lange-Taylor Prizewinning projects are included in the Archive of Documentary Arts at Duke University’s David M. Rubenstein Library. 

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