Collection Number: 2008-5
Creator: Parks, Richard
Title: Richard Parks Photographic Collection ca. 1954 -1974
Quantity: 29 cubic feet (B&W; color) 4x5 and 35 mm
Description: This collection consists of photographs taken by Tallahassee photographers Richard Parks and Evon Streetman. The images are primarily portraits of prominent residents including governors, Supreme Court justices, government officials and public figures. In addition to portraits, about one third of the collection consists of images of Tallahassee's and surrounding areas' attractions, businesses, events and industry. The full collection, 29 cubic feet, is available for research at the State Archives of Florida.
Historical Note: Richard Parks was a successful portrait and commercial photographer in Tallahassee, Florida, from the late 1950s until his untimely death in 1974. A self-taught artist well-known for his perfectionism and dedication, Parks used the same older model camera for most of his work, while employing an array of innovative lighting schemes to create unique warmth and intimacy. He received regional and national recognition for his photographs, including the 1958 Life Magazine Award for a portrait of his daughter.
A frequent contributor to the Tallahassee Democrat, advertising and news agencies from across the nation sought his images of northwest Florida. Three of his works were included in the 1968 77th Annual Exhibition of Professional Photography in Chicago.
Parks partnered with well-known photographer Evon Streetman to form the Parks-Streetman Studio in 1959. His longtime partner and friend eventually sold him the business, and the Richard Parks Studio continued as a successful provider of "portraiture from the traditional to the Mod."
Parks died suddenly of a heart attack December 30, 1974, at age 41, while working in his darkroom. He left behind six daughters and his wife, Susan. At his funeral, Streetman described her former partner as “a master photographer and a priest of the profession, gifted with a spiritual connection to the camera."
Evon Streetman, internationally known for her art/photography, moved to Gainesville, Florida, in 1977. She was a professor at the University of Florida from 1977 to 1999. Streetman currently resides in Suwannee, Florida. She has received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Fine Arts Council of Florida. Her work is in numerous public and private collections including the Ringling Museum of Art, the Polaroid Corporation Collection, the Samuel P. Harn Museum, and the White House, Washington, DC.
Florida Memory is funded under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act, from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, administered by the Florida Department of State, Division of Library and Information Services.
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