The Polaroid Years: Instant Photography and Experimentation

December 19, 2013 - March 23, 2014

Organized by the Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center, Vassar College                                                    

This survey exhibition brings together ground breaking Polaroid pictures by forty artists spanning the period from the initial release of the SX-70 camera in 1972 until the present. The exhibition centers on experimentation and examines how the invention of instant photography—in particular Polaroid, a brand known for its innovation and responsiveness to artistic endeavors—has influenced and inspired amateurs and professionals for nearly forty years. By juxtaposing early experimental work with more recent forays into the possibilities of the medium, the exhibition tells a more complete story of instant photography than has yet been chronicled. The photographs included represent a wide range of approaches and sensibilities and upend established parameters of photography in various ways. Artists represented include such pioneers of instant photography as Ansel Adams, Ellen Carey, Chuck Close, Walker Evans, David Hockney, Robert Mapplethorpe, Joyce Neimanas, Andy Warhol, and William Wegman as well as a new generation of artists including Anne Collier, Bryan Graf, and Grant Worth.


This exhibition was organized by the Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center Vassar College, Poughkeepsie, New York with research support from The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts and exhibition sponsorship by the Smart Family Fund for Art Exhibition Support. 
Local presentation of this exhibition is made possible in part by Mr. and Mrs. Gilbert C. Maurer.