Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Gordon Parks (1912-2006)

(Crossposted from the syntax of things)

"I chose my camera as a weapon against all the things I dislike about America - poverty, racism, discrimination." (from A Choice of Weapons)

On behalf of BlogAsheville, I would like to take this opportunity to bid a fond farewell to one of America's true renaissance men, Gordon Parks, who passed away yesterday at the age of 93, but not before leaving an indelible mark on our cultural landscape.

He was an acclaimed photgrapher, musician, composer, social critic, filmmaker, novelist, activist, and poet who was able to effectively express himself in any medium he saw fit. To any readers who are unfamiliar with his work, you would do well to watch the documentary Half Past Autumn, which will serve as an excellent jumping-off point into much of his work. The books The Learning Tree and A Choice of Weapons are also quite good and worth seeking out.

And, of course, there was Shaft...

Thanks for your art, your wisdom, and your intelligence. You'll be missed.

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