In its fourth year, the Duke Arts Festival (DAF) is poised to showcase more student work than ever. This year's festival will include performances and exhibited artwork from more than 150 students between Oct. 26 and Nov. 4.
Most work will be displayed in the Bryan Center.
Vice Provost for the Arts Scott Lindroth, DAF's primary organizer, said the 2012 festival is a step up from the 2009 Duke Arts Weekend, the first attempt at a campus-wide arts event. Programs and exhibits new to this year's festival will offer a more comprehensive glimpse into Duke's arts culture, Lindroth said.
"I think this will be the best visual art exhibit yet, and the performances around campus should be excellent," he said. "I am most excited about our collaboration with The Archive to present our second Salon, an evening of poetry readings and music by Duke students and faculty on Thursday, Nov. 1."
Duke's first master of fine arts program, now in its second year, is also diving into the festival this year. With 30 students, the MFA in Experimental and Documentary Arts is hosting an exhibit in the Brown Gallery in Bryan Center throughout the 10-day festival.
Bill Fick, visiting professor of the visual arts and the MFA exhibit curator, said the works in the Brown Gallery will include high-quality photographs and film from a group of dedicated artists-in-training.
"They're a little different from the rest of the Duke art community," Fick said. "Most of the festival is made up of undergraduate work, but these students are training to become professional artists."
Second-year MFA student Kristin Bedford submitted a collection of photographs called "Be Still" to the festival. The collection features "moments of faith-based solitude, stillness and contemplation" in a storefront church in East Durham. Bedford said the festival is an especially valuable experience for student artists.
"I think it is important for me to participate in arts festivals so I can begin to connect with how other people experience my work," Bedford said. "It is easy as an artist to be in my own world but in the end sharing what I produce is key. Having a balance of creating work and being in dialogue with others about what the work evokes is what I strive for."
The Duke Arts Festival will culminate with Duke Entertainment Media and Arts Network (DEMAN) weekend on November 2-3. All Arts Festival events are free and open to the public. For more information, visit http://arts.duke.edu/festival.