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Instant Light - Tarkovsky Polaroids

Instant Light: Tarkovsky Polaroids

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Instant Light - Tarkovsky Polaroids - YouTube

The Italian director Michelangelo Antonioni reportedly gave his friend and colleague Andrei Tarkovsky a Polaroid camera in 1977. According to Tonino Guerra, who worked as a screenwriter for both directors, Antonioni often used a Polaroid camera himself while location scouting in Uzbekistan. Polaroid – being one of the flagship products of American consumer culture-, struggled with its image as a medium for amateur photography, and it might appear remarkable that both Antonioni and Tarkovsky – filmmakers with an extreme attention to cinematographic purity – were drawn to this popular and relatively cheap medium. Obviously, professional photographers in the United States such as Robert Mapplethorpe, Ansel Adams and Andy Warhol had already been conceiving Polaroid pictures as an integral part of their work, using its specific image quality to their advantage, and propagating it as a medium for fine art photography.

Russian filmmaker Andrei Tarkovsky’s films — Solaris, Andrei Rublev, and Stalker among them — were renowned for the beauty of their imagery, so it comes as a bit of a surprise to learn that , a format not exactly known for its aesthetics. On the other hand, it’s no surprise at all to learn that Tarkovsky managed to use the medium to take photos often breathtaking in their loveliness and remarkably evocative of mood. Some of the Tarkovsky Polaroids were ; now a Russian photo blog has digitized and presented . Click through for a selection of our favorites.

VERTIGO | Instant Light: Tarkovsky Polaroids

Instant Light: Tarkovsky Polaroids by Andrey Tarkovsky

The Italian director Michelangelo Antonioni reportedly gave his friend and colleague Andrei Tarkovsky a Polaroid camera in 1977. According to Tonino Guerra, who worked as a screenwriter for both directors, Antonioni often used a Polaroid camera himself while location scouting in Uzbekistan. Polaroid – being one of the flagship products of American consumer culture-, struggled with its image as a medium for amateur photography, and it might appear remarkable that both Antonioni and Tarkovsky – filmmakers with an extreme attention to cinematographic purity – were drawn to this popular and relatively cheap medium. Obviously, professional photographers in the United States such as Robert Mapplethorpe, Ansel Adams and Andy Warhol had already been conceiving Polaroid pictures as an integral part of their work, using its specific image quality to their advantage, and propagating it as a medium for fine art photography.