From May of 2013 through December Chuck Close has been photographing the Hollywood elite for a special Vanity Fair issue. Chuck Close describes his working method with the Polaroid 20×24 Camera, which he has used since 1977.
In 1986 Neal Slavin published Britons, and extraordinary collection of 20×24 Polaroid photographs executed over an eight year period in the UK. Anyone who has ever seen a 20×24 Polaroid camera in action will marvel at the technical tour de force this body of work embodies. Add to that Slavin’s ability to orchestrate and inspire his subjects results in truly remarkable documents of a myriad of social constructs.
Foreword for The Britons
I have been an admirer of Neal Slavin since I first saw his book When Two Or More Are Gathered Together,
What were those skills? A scrutiny of his pictures revealed a mastery of composition and colour (it was
It has taken eight years of voluble persuasion, intricate planning and costly expenditure to bring the
The Polaroid 20″ x 24″ Instant Land Camera is a formidable beast, calling for a team of handlers to
All images © Neal Slavin 2013
Filled with images from a trove of artists from Ansel Adams to Andy Warhol, this is the first volume to explore the Polaroid camera’s indelible influence on the history of photography. 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. This fascinating journey through the Polaroid era documents the evolution of instant photography. Hundreds of color images celebrate the myriad ways Polaroid photographs have been used and ingeniously manipulated by Walker Evans, David Hockney, Barbara Kasten, Robert Mapplethorpe, Lucas Samaras, and others. The book features essays addressing the unique technology of instant photography and the marketing genius of the Polaroid Corporation. Artist statements from Ellen Carey, Chuck Close, Philip-Lorca diCorcia, Bryan Graf, Miranda Lichtenstein, David Levinthal, Joy Neimanas, Lisa Oppenheim, Catherine Opie, John Reuter, William Wegman, and James Welling reveal how Polaroids affected and, in many instances, forever changed the way they captured the world around them.
MARY-KAY LOMBINO is the Emily Hargroves Fisher ’57 and Richard B. Fisher Curator at the Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center at Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, New York. She has curated several exhibitions including Off the Shelf: New Forms in Contemporary Artists’ Books and Utopian Mirage: Social Metaphors in Contemporary Photography.
Timothy Greenfield-Sanders has worked with the 20×24 camera since 1986. In those years he used the 20×24 for campaigns for Barney’s, Tommy Hilfiger, on the set Steven Speilberg’s “Hook”, portraits of Presidents and First Ladies, and countless classic images of art world, cinema, and literary celebrities. We were particularly excited to have him agree to photograph at the We Are Family Foundation Celebration Gala 2.0 held at the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City on January 31st, 2013. The We Are Family Foundation, founded by Nile Rodgers is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to the vision of a global family by supporting programs that inspire and educate the next generation. Their mission is to celebrate the vision of a global family by creating and supporting programs that inspire and educate people about mutual respect, understanding and appreciation of cultural diversity. The evening was hosted by actress Rosie Perez and Touré, co-host of MSNBC’s “The Cycle,” and included a concert featuring Adam Lambert, Nile Rodgers & CHIC and special guests, Taylor Dayne, Grandmaster Melle Mel, Grandmaster Caz, Kathy Sledge, Sam Sparro, and Russell Peters. Honorees of the Gala were Adam Lambert, the Unity Honoree, Jeni Stepanek , the Mattie J.T. Stepanek Peacemaker Honoree, and Daniel Stern, the Visionary Honoree.
20x24 Studio West