One Read photography exhibit opens Oct. 24

An exhibit featuring the photographic works of Gordon Parks and photos by Minneapolis high school students opens Oct. 24 at the Mill City Museum, 704 South 2nd St.

The exhibit — which runs through June 8, 2014 — showcases photos on loan from the Gordon Parks Foundation and approximately 30 photos created by students participating in the One Minneapolis One Read photography residency at Juxtaposition Arts led by acclaimed photographer Jamel Shabazz.

The students’ photos were inspired by Parks’ book, A Choice of Weapons, this year’s selection for the citywide “read.”

Book discussions

Discussion sessions have been scheduled at many public libraries. Visit for a listing of upcoming discussion events. Or, start your own conversations with family, friends, coworkers or neighbors.

About the book and the author

Gordon Parks’ autobiography A Choice of Weapons tells how Parks escaped the poverty and bigotry around him and launched his distinguished career by choosing the weapons given him by "a mother who placed love, dignity, and hard work over hatred."

Gordon Parks (1912 – 2006) – photographer for Life magazine, writer, composer, artist and filmmaker – was only 16 in 1928 when he moved from Kansas to Saint Paul, Minn., after his mother's death. There, homeless and hungry, he began his fight to survive, to educate himself, and to "prove my worth." Working as a janitor, railroad porter, musician, or basketball player in such places as Saint Paul, Chicago and New York, Parks struggled against poverty and racism. He taught himself photography with a secondhand camera, worked for black newspapers, and began to document the poverty among African Americans on Chicago's South Side. Then his photographic work brought him to Washington, D.C., as first a photographer with the federal Farm Security Administration and later a war correspondent during World War II.

Where to find the book

“A Choice of Weapons" is available in paperback at local independent and chain bookstores, online booksellers and Minnesota Historical Society Press. It’s also available through Hennepin County Library.

Connect with One Minneapolis One Read



Twitter: @MinneapolisRead, #mplsoneread



Published Oct 16, 2013