Ingenious and Impossible: The Immortal Instant Image


Robert W. Fichter, Jonah, 1980


Robert Cumming, Four Corrugated Cubes from One, 1980


Victor Schrager, Olympia, 1980


William Wegman, Elk’s Club, 1980


Betty Hahn, Belladonna, 1980

These photographs constitute the portfolio Five Still Lifes (1980), published by Paradox Editions Limited. The photos were produced in the Polaroid Corporation’s 20×24 studio in Cambridge, Massachusetts. (New York City’s 20×24 studio’s website is here.)

An imaginative and ingenious impossibility: The Impossible Project (based in Enschede, Netherlands) has done the impossible! Produced new Instant Film! In the near future they will even produce 8×10 and 20×24 inch film.
(A great article about the the Impossible Project appeared in November 2009 on wired.co.uk.)
In New York City The Impossible Project Space—a gallery and store—is open. Although they will not be selling 4×5 film (no surviving equipment), they have a lot of film including brand new monochrome SX-70, 600, Fade to Black film, and, coming this summer, instant color film. It’s an impressive, implausible adventure; inchoate and on the precipice of genius.

MIT Museum will receive an archive of Polaroid history including more than 9,000 artifacts, known as the Museum Collection, (the press release can be read here) including camera prototypes and ephemera.

An impious and imperfect impossibility: 1,200 photographic objects from the Polaroid Collection of Photography was auctioned by Sotheby’s on June 21 and 22, 2010.

An incendiary and iconoclastic impossibility: Non-chemical, digital Polaroid-like images. One option: The Polardoid Project.

An impressive and important impossibility: The Land List. Immense, impeccable, and invaluable, provides a wealth of information about Polaroid cameras and film…

Is nothing not impossible?

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