Most museums are founded by a few wealthy donors who believe in an idea and want to make all the decisions. When we set out to design The Polaroid Museum that traditional arrangement didn't feel true to our brand. We've always put cameras in the hands of the people, allowing them to instantly capture and share memories, and so we wanted to crowdsource our founding body, establishing that authentic connection to the people and the social experience. We've come to Indiegogo to find our founders.
The Fearless Leader
That's Warren, Founder of Polaroid Fotobar, the first-of-its-kind, fun and experiential retail destination that is quickly changing the paradigm of how people "liberate" their photos and turn them into innovative and memorable products. Polaroid Fotobar is behind the effort to open The Polaroid Museum in Las Vegas at The LINQ in March 2014.
The Polaroid Corporation and its founder, Edwin Land, impacted not just the modern imaging industry, but set the course for the future of instant and collaborative sharing which ultimately led to today's world of social media. You may not realize it, but Polaroid played a big role in the world we live in today!
We believe that Polaroid - one of the world's most trusted, well-respected and recognizable brands with a rich 75 year history and an inspiration to many - has a remarkable story that deserves to be told.
We plan to educate guests on:
Polaroid History - the amazing things people did and still do to this day with Polaroid film.
Polaroid Technology - a company that created and maintained a niche all its own for 60 years.
- Polaroid Pop Culture - a friendly product that millions of people absolutely adored.
The History of Polaroid
In the 1960s and 1970s, Polaroid was what Apple is today: the coolest technology company on earth, the one with irresistible products, the one whose stock kept climbing way past the point of logic. In its heyday, Polaroid was an absolute innovation machine - a scientific think tank that periodically kicked out a fantastically profitable, covetable product. In fact, the late Steve Jobs expressly said that he modeled his company to a great extent after Polaroid.
Like Apple, Polaroid had a genius-visionary founder, a man named Edwin Land who both served as the company’s public face and drove its creativity. Land was a Harvard dropout who in 1947 unveiled the latest in a series of extraordinary ideas: the Polaroid Land camera system, one that produced photographs instantly. At a time when most photographers sent off their film by mail for processing, it was stunning. Instead of waiting a week, you had a photo in 60 seconds. If your picture came out lousy, you could try taking it again before the moment evaporated. Nothing else worked like this.
By the mid-fifties, Polaroid was growing like crazy; by the sixties it seemed unstoppable. In 1972, Land launched the product that he considered the company’s crowning achievement: the SX-70 camera system. That’s the one most of us recognize as “Polaroid,” with photos that have a fat white tab at the bottom of the frame. In 1974, a billion Polaroid photos were taken. A few years later, the company reached a billion dollars in annual sales. At that point Polaroid had become a well-established global brand with over $32B of revenue over the 17 years between 1984 and 2000. This was primarily driven by the launch of the more affordable, One Step camera product lines, which made instant photography available to the masses.
Though it’s often perceived as something for snapshots only, Polaroid film—especially in its professional formats—was extraordinary stuff, and was embraced by some of the era’s great photographers. Ansel Adams loved Polaroid, and shot some of his most famous images of Yosemite National Park on Polaroid film. Walker Evans and André Kertész each adopted an SX-70 late in life, when a big traditional camera became cumbersome, and each made beautiful photographs on it. A very special and enormous camera, shooting giant images (20 by 24 inches) that have to be seen to be believed, has been used by everyone from Andy Warhol to Chuck Close to Mary Ellen Mark, and is still in operation.*
The Polaroid Museum
The fun, interactive and educational museum will tell the 75 year story of Polaroid and its founder, Edwin Land. With an extensive collection of rare, never before seen artifacts, including cameras and their prototypes as well as art and advertising courtesy of the Polaroid Company Historical Collection at MIT, the museum will trace Polaroid from its early years through current day.
Further, in collaboration with The Andy Warhol Museum, the "Capturing Celebrity" exhibition will feature a collection of 50 of Warhol's most famous Polaroid photographs including a number of self-portraits, as well as images of celebrities Dennis Hopper, Truman Capote, John Lennon, Yoko Ono, Mick Jagger, Dolly Parton, Farrah Fawcett, Debbie Harry, Giorgio Armani, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Keith Richards, Muhammad Ali and more. Two of Warhol’s personal Polaroid cameras will also be on display.
Other artists and exhibits on display will be announced in the weeks to come. One of those displays will include the 20x24 camera, the largest living Polaroid camera in the world of which only five working examples still exist.
Visitors will go home educated about the brand's rich history, inspired through past works of art and invigorated for the future of photography.
With your support and participation, The Polaroid Museum Project hopes to raise $100,000 to further fund exhibits which will bring the vast history and culture of Polaroid to the world.
What's It Going to Look Like?
The Polaroid Perks
We've created a unique set of perks we think any Polaroid or picture taking lover would enjoy.
$5 --- Express your deep, eternal love for Polaroid for a minimal contribution and we'll send you an 'I love Polaroid' bumper sticker (to proudly proclaim said love) and add your name to our museum website.
$20 --- Become a Founding Member of The Polaroid Museum and we'll hang your favorite photo as a Polaroid Picture with your name on our Founders Wall in the museum. Also includes a commemorative replica of your photo for you to proudly display! (Limited to 5,000)
$25 --- EARLY BIRD: Museum Tickets - 4 tickets to The Polaroid Museum. The next time you come to Las Vegas, stop by The Polaroid Museum and "shake it like a Polaroid Picture". (Limited to 250)
$50 --- Museum Tickets - 4 tickets to The Polaroid Museum. The next time you come to Las Vegas, stop by The Polaroid Museum and "shake it like a Polaroid Picture".
$100 --- 24x30 Polaroid Picture - Indiegogo exclusive, limited-edition 24x30 poster celebrating the establishment of The Polaroid Museum. Includes 2 tickets to the museum. (Limited to 1000)$250 --- VIP Partner - Become our VIP Partner and receive a Polaroid VIP Card which gets you a free lifetime pass to the museum for you and 3 guests, a commemorative founder plaque, your favorite photo as a Polaroid Picture and your name on our Founders Wall. Also includes a signed copy of "Instant: The Story of Polaroid" by Chris Bonanos. (Limited to 1000)$300 --- Polaroid OneStep Camera - Still get the urge to shoot in instant format? Manufactured for over a decade in the 80s and 90s, the Polaroid OneStep CloseUp camera became the standard by which all other cameras were judged. You'll get the OneStep camera, your favorite photo as a Polaroid Picture and your name on our Founders Wall, a commemorative replica of your photo for you to proudly display and a signed copy of "Instant: The Story of Polaroid" by Chris Bonanos. (Limited to 50)
$5,000 --- The Ultimate Selfie - "Selfie" was 2013's word of the year. Here's your opportunity to take the ultimate selfie. Have your portrait taken on the 20x24 camera by a Professional Polaroid Portrait Photographer in one of four locations: Las Vegas, San Francisco, Boston or New York. (Limited to 50)
$10,000 --- VIP Private Event - The Polaroid Museum yours for 2 hours to host your own private event with 100 guests. (Food and drink not included, date subject to approval). Also includes a Polaroid VIP Card which gets you a free lifetime pass to the museum for you and 3 guests, a commemorative founder plaque, your favorite photo as a Polaroid Picture and your name on our Founders Wall and a signed copy of "Instant: The Story of Polaroid" by Chris Bonanos. (Limited to 5)
*Above paragraphs about The Polaroid Corporation courtesy of Chris Bonanos, author of 'Instant: The Story of Polaroid'.