A Choice of Weapons: Inspired by Gordon Parks
A Choice of Weapons: Inspired by Gordon Parks explores the enduring legacy of photographer, writer, composer, activist, and filmmaker Gordon Parks, and spotlights his visionary work and its impact on artists working today. Gordon’s legacy comes to life through three contemporary photographers: Devin Allen, whose photograph Baltimore Uprising of the 2015 Freddie Gray protests was featured on the cover of Time magazine; LaToya Ruby Frazier who for five years documented the Flint, Michigan water crisis and in 2020 photographed Breonna Taylor’s family for Vanity Fair; and Jamel Shabazz, whose New York City photographs of individuals and groups form a visual history of cultural shifts and struggles across the city. The film celebrates the power of images in advancing racial, economic, and social equality as seen through the lens of Gordon Parks, one of America’s most trailblazing artists, and the generation of young photographers, filmmakers, and activists he inspired.
A trailblazing artist and his enduring legacy
“Gordon Parks’ photography demanded that America look at itself. His work did what art does at its very best. It makes the viewer engage deeply in the subject and to see narratives about life, about our history...what you saw was dignity in the face of remarkable discrimination and bigotry.”
- Darren Walker, President, Ford Foundation
The Screening Guide supports creative and dynamic conversations about the work of Gordon Parks and the ways his trailblazing work continue to inspire artists and filmmakers today. With background information, screening tips, discussion questions, and opportunities to engage more deeply with topics and images included in the documentary, the content is appropriate for adult learners, school-age classrooms, museum programs, and youth arts organizations.