Mon-Fri, 11am-7pm; Sat, noon-5pm; Sun, closed
N, R at Prince St.
After Polaroid announced in 2008 that they would be discontinuing their instant film, an ambitious group of former Polaroid employees and photography enthusiasts joined forces as The Impossible Project, vowing to save analog photography by purchasing the company’s last operating film factory in the Netherlands. Two years later, the company opened its New York flagship store in an airy Soho loft. Here, Polaroid devotees can purchase Impossible’s newly developed forms of instant film (it works with Polaroid 600, SX-70, and Spectra cameras) along with hard-to-find tools, leather carrying cases, unique photo frames, and pinhole cameras made from old cigar boxes. At the center of the store, displays of salvaged Polaroid film and vintage analog cameras in near-perfect condition form a visual history dating back to the fifties. Would-be photographers in need of inspiration can also take in rotating exhibits by well-known photographers like Autumn de Wilde, Maurizio Galimberti, and others who consider analog instant photography an art form, not just an archaic hobby.