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“More of Everything”: Exhibit Opening and Artist’s Talk
February 12 @ 5:00 pm - 6:30 pm
“More of Everything”
Exhibit Opening and Artist’s Talk
with Natasha Lehner
2024 Kenan Graduate Arts Fellow and MFA Candidate in Experimental and Documentary Arts
in conversation with Alexa Dilworth
Documentary Arts Writer and Editor
Monday, February 12, 2024
Reception: 5:00 p.m.
Artist’s Talk: 5:30 p.m.
Join the Kenan Institute for Ethics for the opening of “More of Everything,” an exhibit by Natasha Lehner, 2024 Kenan Graduate Arts Fellow and MFA Candidate in Experimental and Documentary Arts at Duke University. An opening reception at 5:00 p.m. will be followed by an artist’s talk at 5:30 p.m., with Lehner in conversation with documentary arts writer and editor Alexa Dilworth.
How can you know someone you have never met? Tash Lehner’s exhibit offers one provisional answer with materials from the personal archive of her biological grandfather, Harvey Karman, who died in 2008. Karman was a psychologist and passionate abortion rights advocate who sought to make the procedure as accessible as possible. In his quest to do so, he experimented with controversial abortion technologies, some of which caused serious harm to the people seeking his help. Yet the Karman cannula, a medical instrument he invented in the early 1970s, made early abortions safe and accessible, and is still in use today.
A father of four, Karman helped several other families conceive children by donating sperm. One of these children was Lehner’s father, who found out about his true parentage ten years ago, instantly connecting him with an extended family that he never knew existed. For Lehner, a whirlwind reunion with her biological relatives ensued — along with the discovery that, like her and her father, Karman was an avid photographer, some of whose abstract compositions bore startling resemblances to her own.
“You are more of everything, including love” is a line from one of the many poems in Karman’s archive. Incorporating photographs and text by Lehner, her father, and Karman, as well as archival images from media, “More of Everything” shows how a story — and life — contains an infinite expanse of meaning, as do the other stories and lives that it touches. It explores not only the tensions between the private and public life of a complicated figure, but the mystery of how intimate and strongly felt connections between human beings can be. In spite of time, distance, and never knowing each other, “More of Everything” suggests that sometimes, somehow, we can.
“More of Everything” runs February 12–March 8, 2024 in the Kenan-Keohane Gallery in the West Duke Building on Duke University’s East Campus. To bookend the exhibition, Lehner will also participate in a talkback following Bo Peterson’s performance of “Pieces of Me,” which will be performed in the Ahmadieh Family Conference Room (West Duke 101) on March 6 at 7:00pm.
This exhibit precedes a larger exhibit on the same material to be shown at Cassilhaus on March 22–April 16 as Lehner’s MFA|EDA Thesis Exhibition.