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The Ruby is a catalyst for creativity and a home for making art at Duke.
Date & Time
April 17, 2020 at 12:00 pm1:00 pm
Free; open to all. Light lunch provided.
Ruby Lounge at the Rubenstein Arts Center
2020 Campus Drive
Durham, NC 27705 United States

In order to minimize health and safety risks from COVID-19 to our patrons, the larger community, and Duke students, faculty, and staff, Duke University has adopted new policies on spring semester classes, residential life, travel, events, and campus visitors. In keeping with the university’s directives, we are cancelling public events at the Rubenstein Arts Center through April 20. More information.

Durham-based artist Julia Gartrell was in residence in the Rubenstein Arts Center (Nov 4, 2019–Jan 19, 2020) to develop her new traveling sculpture experience: the Radical Repair Workshop.

For her Ruby Friday presentation, Gartrell will explore the historical context of repair, its class implications and environmental impact, and the relationship that repair can have to a sculptural practice. Gartrell will frame notions of mending and repair through the lens of her own practice, which explores modes of “making do,” expands functional fixedness, and considers the power of failure.

Learn about the trajectory of the Radical Repair Workshop, a public art project that collects and repairs items in a conceptual and often non-functional manner. Gartrell will unpack the power that exists in rejecting functionality in favor of a deep consideration of materials, history, context, and the psychic energy of an object. The audience will be encouraged to participate in the talk through a very simple hands on material exploration.

About the Speaker

Image by Robert Zimmerman

Julia Gartrell is an artist and educator based in Durham, NC. She received an MFA in sculpture from the Rhode Island School of Design and a BA in art from Kalamazoo College. Her work explores notions of “making do,” material plasticity, and radical approaches to repair. Her current project, the Radical Repair Workshop, is a traveling repair shop, gallery, and workshop space housed in a vintage camper. She has participated in residencies at the Fine Arts Work Center, the Power Plant Gallery at Duke University, Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts, Ox-Bow School of Art, and others. Julia has exhibited nationally and internationally, including at CAM Raleigh, the Casablanca Biennale, the Provincetown Art Association and Museum, LUMP Gallery. Julia currently teaches as adjunct faculty at Virginia Commonwealth University and through the DukeCreate program.

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