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Social Studies

Anila Rubiku

The ASU Art Museum, named “the single most impressive venue for contemporary art in Arizona” by Art in America magazine, announces the CEC ArtsLink residency of Milan-based, Albanian-born artist, Anila Rubiku as part of its Social Studies initiative from Oct. 28 – Nov. 17, 2008

ASU Art Museum is excited to have artist Anila Rubiku currently in residence. Often with assistance from members from local communities, Rubiku works primarily with sewn paper and large-scale structures that depict the human body and explore urban architectural spaces. Rubiku’s current project at ASU Art Museum is a story told in stitched leather. Each individually stitched section will be joined together to form a large wall-sized work.

“The pieces come together to tell a story,” Rubiku says. “This is how I see Arizona; it’s so large and growing so much. This is because of the human element; we build houses because families need them. As families grow our urban development also must grow with them. This story is also formed by the desert, and the shapes and elements of the desert become a sort of erotic and humorous symbol for procreation and growth in both the human sense and with respect to urban building.”

As part of its mission as a university museum, the ASU Art Museum is committed to showing artists’ work first and is proud to offer artists the opportunity to grow creatively and experiment with new forms. The Social Studies initiative provides opportunities for artists working in various media to interact creatively and collaboratively with students, other artists, faculty and community members. The social interaction of the museum-as-artist’s-studio setting encourages participants to explore new avenues of creativity and ultimately enhance their understanding of their world and each other.

Rubiku also is pleased to announce the U.S. premiere of her video installation at Taliesin West – Frank Lloyd Wright’s national historic landmark home and studio in Scottsdale – in a collaboration with ASU Art Museum, on Nov.14, 2008, from 7–9 p.m. Titled One Night Only, the video installation continues the artist’s conversation on urban and human development. One Night Only includes a paper construction of the most rapidly growing cities of the last ten years with video projection, and has been shown before only in Tel Aviv.

“Both the Museum work and the video installation are about architecture,” says Rubiku. “People make families and initially start a city because they need someplace for their families. As the cities grow they start becoming more planned, but they are still planned in response to human needs. These two different media are just two different ways of exploring this same theme.”

Rubiku’s works are recommended for mature audiences; the viewing at Taliesin West is free but does not include facility tours. Taliesin West is located at 12621 N. Frank Lloyd Wright Blvd. at Cactus Rd. For information about tours, call 480.680.2700 ext. 494.

About the artist:
Rubiku has shown her work throughout Europe, Asia, the Middle East and in the U.S., and has done numerous collaborative community projects around the world with diverse groups that include Ethiopian women in Tel Aviv and students of the Design & Architecture University in Taipei. Rubiku is interested in bringing knowledge of American art and architectural centers and community organization practices back to Albania to inform an urban revitalization project she will undertake with architectural students from Tirana University.

ArtsLink Fellow Anila Rubiku’s residency is generously funded by CEC ArtsLink, N.Y.
The ASU Art Museum also acknowledges the following for their additional in-kind assistance with the residency: Taliesin West, Comfort Inn of Tempe, The Tempe Convention and Visitors Bureau, and Moroso.