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History The Richard Korkes Photo Collection

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by SuperFleye, Jul 27, 2013.

  1. SuperFleye
    Joined: Jul 17, 2005
    Posts: 2,025

    SuperFleye
    Alliance Vendor

    Richard "Korky" Korkes is a legendary East Coast customizer. At age 17, in 1952, Korky customized his first car, a 1946 Ford convertible. He went on to restyle a 1954 Ford two years later, that become known as the Parisian. The Parisian is without doubt one of the most famous custom cars of the East Coast. After building a futuristic bubble top Jaguar for Bobby Freedman at age 28, George Barris headhunted Korky, and he went to California to work as shop foreman at Barris Kustom City. As shop foreman at Barris Kustoms Korky was in charge of the cars that were built. George was the promotor and constantly on the road while Korky ran the shop, solved completion issues, and made certain the cars were finished on time. Among the celebritiess that Korky built cars for both at Barris and at his own shop include: Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Bob Hope, Farrah Fawcett, Marvin Gaye, Jermaine Jackson, Tom Daniels, Harry Bradley, Reverend Ike, Bernie Cornfeld, Cher, Doug Rose, Canned Heat and many more.

    Trough his friend Joseph Miner, Korky has shared some of his enormous photo collection with Kustomrama:

    http://kustomrama.com/index.php?title=The_Richard_Korkes_Photo_Collection

    As I go along and add photos I will share them here as well, so people can add information and photos of the cars, and maybe share some memories thay have of em!
     
  2. SuperFleye
    Joined: Jul 17, 2005
    Posts: 2,025

    SuperFleye
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    [​IMG]

    First out is a photo dated October 1958, that shows Art Guglielmi's 1955 Ford Victoria. Both Art and Korky was from Whippany, New Jersey, and they were both members of the Free Wheelers of Whippany car club that Korky had started. Art was the Vice President, and his Victoria was restyled by the President at his shop Korky's Kustom Shop. Additional info on Art's Ford can be found here: http://kustomrama.com/index.php?title=Art_Guglielmi%27s_1955_Ford
     
  3. SuperFleye
    Joined: Jul 17, 2005
    Posts: 2,025

    SuperFleye
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    [​IMG]

    This photo from the Richard Korkes Photo Collection shows the front of George Pillion's 1955 Chevrolet Convertible. George was also from Whippany, New Jersey, and his custom creation, named "The Sportsman", featured custom bodywork by Korky. The frontal area on George's Chevrolet was heavily restyled featuring two scoops above the grille. The grille was fit with a pair of 1958 Edsel headlights. Four fins were grafted onto the rear of the car. The frame was C'd, and the car lowered front and back. George's Chevrolet was displayed at the 1960 Hartford Autorama with three other Korky customs. More info on the Sportsman can be found here: http://kustomrama.com/index.php?title=George_Pillion%27s_1955_Chevrolet
     
  4. SuperFleye
    Joined: Jul 17, 2005
    Posts: 2,025

    SuperFleye
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    [​IMG]

    A photo of Andy Belusko's 1954 Ford that Korky restyled. Andy worked at the post office in Whippany, and he was a fellow member of the Free Wheelers of Whippany car club. Korky sold the original engine from his Parisienne custom to Andy, a full race 312 1956 Ford Thunderbird engine that Dick DiBiasse had built.

    More info on Andy's Ford can be found here: http://kustomrama.com/index.php?title=Andy_Belusko%27s_1954_Ford
     
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  5. SuperFleye
    Joined: Jul 17, 2005
    Posts: 2,025

    SuperFleye
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    Korky and Joseph just sent some additional info about this build:

    "1954 done in about 1957 at korkys kustoms in whippany by Korky and his cousin Bob Korkes. First cusom was 55 cad headlights, hood scoop, Rear renders made from sheet metal and lead hand made, bought continental kit and installed it, 55 Packard taillights, customized bumper, hidden bots and exhaust pipe through bumper. painted metallic green with gold scallops. quarter panel scoops, 55 Pontiac side trim, interior by Dominik Sangilo (deceased). Rodding and Restyling magazine twice, on first custom then after revision. Second revision was 59 Mecrc grille, 58 chevy bumper, quad headlights from 58 Lincoln. Gold with white interior, pleated... could not get in car with shoes! Last saw car in 62. Said one of the cleanest car he ever built."

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    A profile shot of an early version of John Nadzon's 1954 Mercury. John's Mercury, named The Mysterian, was restyled by Korky. The rear fenders on John's Merc were extended 2 feet and fit with 1956 Packard taillights. As this photo shows, it was painted green with gold scallops. By 1960 John's Mercury had been fit with a 1959 Mercury grille and Lincoln quad headlights. This version made it's debut at the 1960 Hartford Autorama, where it was displayed along with three other Korky custom creations.

    More info on John's Mercury can be found here: http://kustomrama.com/index.php?title=John_Nadzon%27s_1954_Mercury
     
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2013
    kidcampbell71 likes this.
  6. Thiis '58 Studebaker claims to to a Korkie-built car. Is it?
     

    Attached Files:

  7. Rags To Richs
    Joined: Dec 19, 2007
    Posts: 390

    Rags To Richs
    Member

    YES ..... Korky did the Stardust Stude in CALIF after leaving NJ.......
     
  8. Love the '54. HRP

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  9. Deuce3wCpe
    Joined: Aug 21, 2004
    Posts: 843

    Deuce3wCpe
    Member
    from New Jersey

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