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Polaroid Corporation


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(established 1937)

The revolutionary 1948 Polaroid Model 95 was the first camera was to be able to develop its own prints. Launched onto the market in 1948 it was manufactured by the Polaroid Corporation of Cambridge, Massachusetts, and designed by Walter Dorwin Teague Associates. Teague's relationship with the Polaroid Corporation had been first established in 1939 with the design of a streamlined Bakelite and aluminium Executive desk lamp. The Polaroid Corporation had been built on work in light polarization carried out by Edwin H. Land (1909–91) from the late 1920s onwards. The company's first products had included anti‐glare car headlamps, sunglass lenses, and desk lights and, during the Second World War, it developed specialist techniques for three‐dimensional photography. It was also involved with optical aspects of gun sights and binocular lenses. Land began working on the Polaroid photographic system in 1944, building on a German invention of the 1920s, bringing the project to fruition with the Model 1995 camera, which retailed at $89.95. Many improvements were made, including the Polaroid Electric Eye 900 camera (1960), once again designed by Teague for Land. Other American design consultancies were used by Land, most notably Henry Dreyfuss Associates (HAD), who designed the Automatic 100 camera (1963) utilizing the ‘instant’ colour film devised by Polaroid. This was followed by the Model 20 Swinger aimed at the teenage market, also developed by HDA in 1965. HDA also designed the Polaroid Pronto camera (1976) and the Vision Date + (1994), which won an IDEA Award in 1994. The Polaroid Corporation also moved into other areas such as fibre optics, video, and computer products.

Subjects: Industrial and Commercial Art.


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