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February 25, 2014

Arts Hall in Chicago to honor Kansas native Gordon Parks

Filmmaker George Lucas and his wife Mellody Hobson are donating $25 million to the University of Chicago for an arts hall that will honor Gordon Parks.

Filmmaker George Lucas and his wife Mellody Hobson are donating $25 million to the University of Chicago for an arts hall that will honor Gordon Parks.

University officials of Chicago said Tuesday that the grant from The George Lucas Family Foundation will pay for a new arts hall at the university’s Laboratory Schools in Hyde Park.

The 86,000-square-foot building will open in 2015 and will be named after Parks, a photographer, author, filmmaker, musician and social justice advocate.

Hobson is president of Chicago-based Ariel Investments. She married the Star Wars filmmaker in 2013.

Lucas said in a statement that art can “transform lives and communities” and said he hopes Parks’ legacy will inspire future generations.

Parks was born in Fort Scott in 1912 and became a world famous photographer for Life magazine. He also was a successful filmmaker and musician. He died in 2006.

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