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Battered Man

A work made of gelatin silver print.

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  • A work made of gelatin silver print.




Gordon Parks
American, 1912–2006

About this artwork

In a career that lasted more than half a century, Gordon Parks produced moving documentary photo-essays as well as groundbreaking popular films. After working for the Farm Security Administration and Office of War Information, Parks joined Life magazine in 1948, becoming the first African American photographer on staff. He shot fashion assignments and then moved into reportage, with a story on the gang wars that were consuming Harlem in the late 1940s. In order to gain the trust of gang members, Parks spent a week driving Midtowners gang-leader Red Jackson and his companions around in his Buick Roadmaster, learning about turf lines and observing the daily reality of brutality and death. The emotionally charged images made for the story—including this work, although it was not included in the final publication—solidified Parks’s reputation as an ambitious and uncompromising photojournalist.

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Photography and Media


Gordon Parks (Photographer)


Battered Man


United States


Made 1948


Gelatin silver print


23.5 × 18.6 cm (9 1/4 × 7 5/16 in.) (image/paper/mount)

Credit Line

Laura T. Magnuson Acquisition Fund

Reference Number


Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email . Information about image downloads and licensing is available here.


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