Caron Bowman

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Shotguns, sundaes and segregation: Gordon Parks stunning photos of families in 1950s Alabama provide a poignant and unique look at life during the civil-rights era

Posted by Caron Bowman on January 24, 2015 at 5:05 AM
  • A collection of photos by famed American cameraman Gordon Parks will go on display at the High Museum of Art starting Saturday
  • 20 of the photos are taken from his September 1956 Life magazine photo-essay The Restraints: Open and Hidden
  • The 20 additional prints that have been added were discovered by his estate in 2012, six years after he passed away

Gordon Parks: Segregation Story, a collection of his photographs, will show at the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, Georgia beginning this Saturday.

Rediscovered in 2012, six years after he died of cancer, these photos take a look at life in Alabama in the 1950s through the lens of three different families. 

The photos were originally shot on assignment for the September 1956 Life magazine photo-essay The Restraints: Open and Hidden


The High Museum of Art in Atlanta, Georgia will be showing a collection of photographs by famed American cameraman Gordon Parks

Parks followed three families – the Thorntons, the Causeys and the Tanners – in their work, home and church lives near Mobile, Alabama


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While only 20 photos ran in the original Life photo-essay, the exhibit will feature 40 of Parks' shots from the series

 

The photographs were taken while on assignment for the September 1956 Life magazine photo-essay The Restraints: Open and Hidden.

The series represents one of Parks' earliest social documentary studies on color film

 

He would later go on to shoot famous subjects including Malcolm X, Barbara Streissand and Muhammad Ali for Life, working with the magazine for 20 years.

 

He also became one of the first African-Americans to ever shoot for Vogue.

 

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