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The Ruby is a catalyst for creativity and a home for making art at Duke.
Date & Time
February 5, 2018 at 7:00 pm
Free; registration required. Register here
Film Theater at the Rubenstein Arts Center
2020 Campus Drive
Durham, NC 27705

“The films of Nathaniel Dorsky blend a beauteous celebration of the sensual world with a deep sense of introspection and solitude. They are occasions for reflection and meditation, on light, landscape, time and the motions of consciousness. . . Dorsky’s films reveal the mystery behind everyday existence, providing intimations of eternity.”—San Francisco Cinematheque

The Duke University Master of Fine Arts in Experimental and Documentary Arts program welcomes visiting artist Nathaniel Dorsky to Duke and Durham in the spring semester of 2018 for four nights of films, February 2-5. Nathaniel Dorsky: 18 at 18 features 18 films from the filmmaker, screened at silent speed, 18 frames per second.

Screening at the Rubenstein Arts Center at Duke University, the slate of films spans the filmmaker’s career and includes a new six-film cycle, Garden of Light, photographed at the San Francisco Arboretum in 2017. The Garden of Light cycle will be screened in its entirety as a world premiere.


World premiere of the entire “Garden of Light” film cycle:

(2017, 31 min)
Elohim, or divine beings, the energy of light as creation.

(2017, 19 min.)
Abaton, a sacred place, a sanctuary for dreaming and healing.

(2017, 16 min.)
Coda is an afterword to Elohim and Abaton, the first shades of death and knowing.

(2017, 20 min.)
Ode is the fourth section of the cycle… there is now the presence of death and dying as the dry summer begins.

(2017, 20 min.)
World Premiere: September’s ripeness, a blessing on earth, our Indian summer…

(2017, 16 min.)
World Premiere:  A monody is an ode sung by a single actor in a Greek tragedy, a poem lamenting a person’s death. In this case, the sixth section of this Arboretum cycle, the death of the garden itself.

(2017, 15 min.)
UPDATE: 19th film just added! World Premiere: Epilogue is the seventh and final film in the Garden of Light arboretum cycle, a descent into the dark damp earth, a period of dying.

About the Artist

Nathaniel Dorsky, born in New York City in 1943, is an experimental filmmaker and film editor who has been making films since 1963. He has lived in San Francisco since 1971. His films have been screened at museums, universities, and festivals around the United States and Europe, and he frequently exhibits new work at the New York Film Festival’s Views from the Avant-Garde and the Wavelengths program of the Toronto International Film Festival. In the spring of 2012 Dorsky screened films as part of the three month long Whitney Biennial. And in October 2015, the New York Film Festival honored his work with a thirty four film complete retrospective at Lincoln Center. He has received numerous awards and recognitions including a Guggenheim Fellowship and grants from the National Endowment of the Arts, the Rockefeller Foundation, the LEF Foundation, the Foundation for Contemporary Arts, and the California Arts Council.

Kodak Motion Picture Film interviews Nathaniel Dorsky.

Top image: Still from Abaton. Images and descriptions courtesy of the artist.

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