From its inception in 1947, the Polaroid system inspired artists to experiment–to dazzling effect–with the cameras’ unique technologies. Edwin Land, the inventor of the first Polaroid instant camera, remarked on his discovery, “Photography will never be the same.” And he was right. Polaroid photographs have been used and ingeniously manipulated by Walker Evans, David Hockney, Barbara Kasten, Robert Mapplethorpe, Lucas Samaras, and others. Polaroids affected and, in many instances, forever changed the way they captured the world around them.
As Polaroid began its slow demise in the 2000s, Polaroid research photographer John Reuter met several times with a man name Florian Kaps to discuss how they would attempt to save Polaroid’s instant film. Reuter purchased two of the 20×24 cameras and the remaining supply of 20×24 film for a cool $5 million. (This camera will be making an appearance for three days during the Click! festival at Anchorlight.) Kaps created The Impossible Project and set to work reviving the other Polaroid lines. Dedicated Polaroid users were given a second chance.
The qualities of the various Polaroid films are unique and hard to duplicate with any other medium. The popularity of these films is said to have been an inspiration to companies like Hipstamatic and Lomography. The artists in this exhibition represent the incredible diversity of creative approaches to using this medium.
1401 S. Bloodworth St. Raleigh, NC 27610