Portrait of sculptor, Alberto Giacometti

An exhibition of iconic photography documenting 20th-century American life by barrier-breaking African-American artist Gordon Parks (1912-2006) will be on view this spring at Northwestern University‘s Mary and Leigh Block Museum of Art,

40 Arts Circle

on the Evanston campus. 

The exhibition, “Bare Witness: Photographs by Gordon Parks,” in the Block Museum’s Main Gallery April 24 to June 28, features 73 works selected by Mr. Parks, the first African-American hired by a mass-circulation magazine (Life) and to direct movies (“Shaft,” “The Learning Tree”) in the Hollywood studio system.


Many of Mr. Parks’ images, such as custodian Ella Watson posing with her mop and broom before a U.S. flag in “American Gothic” (1942), Malcolm X addressing a 1963 Black Muslim rally in Chicago, the fists of boxer Muhammad Ali after a 1966 victory in the ring, and exiled Black Panther Party members Eldridge and Kathleen Cleaver in Algeria in 1970, helped illustrate the social changes occurring during the second half of the 20th century in America. 


To complement the “Bare Witness” exhibition, the Block Museum and Block Cinema have organized programs that are open to the public. Guided tours of the exhibition will be available at 2 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays from April 25 through June 28.

Call 847-491-4000 or visit www. blockmuseum.northwestern.edu.