Maynard L. Parker - Watts, Jennifer A; Huntington Library - Yale University Press

Art and Architecture

Published in association with The Huntington Library 

Maynard L. Parker

Modern Photography and the American Dream

  • Edited by Jennifer A. Watts; With contributions by Edward R. Bosley, Daniel P. Gregory, Christopher Hawthorne, Elaine Tyler May, Monica Penick, Charles Phoenix, D. J. Waldie, and Sam Watters
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Honorable Mention, Photography/Art category at the 2013 San Francisco Book Festival sponsored by the JM Northern Media LLC

Winner of the Photography/Art category at the 2013 New York Book Festival given by JM Northern Media LLC.

Winner of the 2013 Southern California Book Festival, in the Photography/Art category, sponored by JM Northern Media LLC.

As a prolific photographer for House Beautiful, Better Homes and Gardens, Architectural Digest, and Sunset magazine, Maynard L. Parker (1900–1976) was a pioneer in documenting residential spaces and landscapes for postwar America. His extensively published, sun-kissed brand of photography made him a critical contributor to domestic design culture from the 1940s into the 1960s. Parker's lens revealed the homes and lifestyles of affluent Americans and celebrities, including Judy Garland, Clark Gable, and Bing Crosby, as well as the interiors, gardens, and built works of Samuel Marx, Frank Lloyd Wright, Thomas Church, and Cliff May, offering an alluring template for living in a new consumer age.

Maynard L. Parker: Modern Photography and the American Dream is the first monograph to consider Parker and his work. Lavishly illustrated essays by leading scholars set Parker's photography against the backdrop of an unprecedented demographic shift, the Cold War, and a suburban society increasingly fixated on consumption.

Jennifer A. Watts is curator of photographs at The Huntington Library and editor of Edward Weston: A Legacy. Edward R. Bosley is director of the Gamble House in Pasadena, California. Daniel P. Gregory is former senior editor of Sunset magazine. Christopher Hawthorne is architecture critic for the Los Angeles Times. Elaine Tyler May is professor of American studies at the University of Minnesota. Monica Penick is assistant professor in design studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Charles Phoenix is an author and performer. D. J. Waldie is a contributing editor for the Los Angeles Times. Sam Watters is an architectural and cultural historian.