The Making of an Argument
September 19 – December 21, 2014
Curated by John Mason, Associate Professor and Associate Chair, Corcoran Department of History
Gordon Parks: The Making of an Argument, a pathbreaking exhibition that originated at the New Orleans Museum of Art, explores the 1948 Life magazine photo-essay that introduced one of the 20th century’s most important photographers, filmmakers, and writers to the American public. Gordon Parks’ photographs and the magazine’s text, which relied heavily on his reporting, propelled readers into the world of Red Jackson, a seventeen-year-old "Harlem Gang Leader." Parks spent a month with Jackson and his gang, the Midtowners, while working on the story. Having gained the young men’s trust, he was able to
make photographs that possessed the fly-on-the-wall intimacy and dramatic urgency of film noir.