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Doc DET and Freep Honor David P. Gilkey

  • Red Bull House of Art 1551 Winder Street Detroit, MI, 48207 United States (map)

The Documenting DETROIT Lecture Series and Open House at the Red Bull House of Art continues on Saturday, July 30, from 6-9 pm, celebrating the life and distinguished career of former Detroit Free Press and National Public Radio (NPR) photographer David P. Gilkey. 

There will be a presentation of David's work that include commentary from David about his work and the importance of photojournalism in the world. Afterwards, Nancy Andrews, former Detroit Free Press Managing Editor of Digital, Joe Swickard, retired Free Press reporter, and Kainaz Amaria, former NPR visuals team supervising editor and current Design Director of Storytelling at Vox Media, will discuss working with David and the impact of his work. The discussion will be moderated by Detroit Free Press Visuals Director Kathy Kieliszewski.

On June 5, while traveling with an Afghan army unit, Gilkey and Afghan colleague Zabihillah Tamanna were killed in Helmand Province, southern Afghanistan when their vehicle was struck by shellfire.

During his eleven years at the Free Press, Gilkey made numerous trips to troubled countries including Afghanistan, Iraq and Bosnia. Through his lens, Free Press readers saw the horror of war and its toll on the citizens and soldiers embroiled in those conflicts. 

Gilkey studied journalism at Oregon State University. His first job was at the Boulder Daily Camera, where he handled both local assignments and overseas assignments for Knight Ridder. He later joined the Detroit Free Press where he worked until 2007 when he joined NPR and continued traveling the world to document conflict.

Throughout his career, Gilkey received numerous awards: in 2004, he was named Michigan "Photographer of the Year" by the Michigan Press Photographers Association. He received a 2007 national Emmy award for the video series, "Band of Brothers," about Michigan Marines in Iraq. In 2011, he was named Still Photographer of the Year by the White House Photographers Association (WHPA).