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The Ruby is a catalyst for creativity and a home for making art at Duke.
Date & Time
March 20, 2019 at 6:00 pm7:30 pm
Free; open to all.
The Murthy Agora (Studio 129) at the Rubenstein Arts Center
2020 Campus Dr
Durham, NC 27708 United States

Join us for an opening reception celebrating Dust of the Zulu, an immersive installation incorporating sound, photography, and video that brings twenty-five years of award-winning ethnomusicological fieldwork in South Africa to life.

Dust of the Zulu: Ngoma Aesthetics after Apartheid (Duke University Press, 2017) is the fruit of twenty-five years of ethnomusicological fieldwork on a tradition of Zulu men’s singing and dancing called ngoma. A competitive form of music and dance rooted in the twentieth-century system of southern African migrant labor, ngoma in South Africa is a public spectacle associated with homecoming times in the rural province KwaZulu-Natal and Sunday afternoons at men’s hostels in the cities.

Dozens of photos from the South African photojournalist TJ Lemon enrich Dust of the Zulu, allowing readers vivid glimpses of the performers’ energy and interrelationships. For this installation, TJ Lemon’s work is pulled off the page and brought to life. Photographs and videos incorporating layering, texture, movement, and juxtaposition—principles of ngoma aesthetics—illuminate the art form in its social and aesthetic complexity. Sound will surround visitors, making them feel they stepped into a ngoma community performance.

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