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A Choice of Weapons: Photography, Surveillance, and Ethics

Wed, April 28th, 2021 at 6:00 PM

Gordon Parks famously stated that photography was his “choice of weapons” against racism, intolerance, and poverty. While photographs have certainly been used to document and advance social justice causes in the past, the use of photography in recent protest movements has demonstrated one of the dangers of the medium. While protest photographs have amplified these movements’ messages and visibility, those very same photographs have been used against their makers by other authorities. This panel will explore the new emerging chapter in the ethics of photography, considering how the digital, social world has made photography an instantaneous and global “weapon” that can slip easily from one hand to another, and offering guidance on ethical and inclusive approaches to protest photography.

Panelists include Caroline Sinders, Brian Palmer, and Tara Pixley. The program will be moderated by Russell Lord, Freeman Family Curator of Photographs, Prints, and Drawings at NOMA.





About Creative Assembly

Creative Assembly is a community engagement initiative by the New Orleans Museum of Art that uses neighborhood-based participatory art experiences as a vehicle for personal exploration, community collaboration, and social change. At the New Orleans Museum of Art, we are committed to connecting to people both within and beyond the museum walls, and dedicated to developing sustained relationships with the individuals, organizations, and diverse communities of New Orleans. Bringing together community members, artists, community-based organizations, and museum staff, the Creative Assembly Initiative facilitates community-generated art projects and programs in New Orleans neighborhood spaces and at the museum.


Visit NOMA

See the exhibition New Photography: Create, Collect, Compile at NOMA through June 6, 2021





NOMA’s Creative Assembly Community Engagement Initiative is supported by the Wagner Foundation. To learn more about the Wagner Foundation, please visit  www.wfound.org.  

This project is supported in part by the National Endowment for the Arts. To find out more about how National Endowment for the Arts grants impact individuals and communities, visit www.arts.gov.


Wed, April 28th, 2021
6:00 PM
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