This unobtrusive and thoroughly hidden little shop in Prague Žižkov will surprise you not only by its original concept of a small and modest interior, but also by its vast offer of items for sale. It specializes in instant photography and lomography. You can buy here all the equipment for your old Polaroid, from films to hand-made albums from Paragraph. If you do not own a Polaroid yet, the pleasant staff will show and demonstrate to you the breath-taking magic of this popular technic. In case you are a fan of analogue film, you can choose from a range of authentically renovated old Russian cameras from my dear deer.

What emanates from Polagraph is simply the enthusiasm of its owners. This might be the reason why they dedicated one of the parts to the regular photographic exhibitions and thus gave a bit of space to the rapidly growing community around instant photography. You can find really interesting photos in Polagraph and its owners will happily describe their origins to you.

Despite being slightly detached from the busy city center, Polagraph is definitely worth visiting. This is known to many Prague photographers who have their frequent thematic talks here, as well as to other enthusiasts who like to come to this cozy space to sit down on comfortable cushions, to look through publications about Polaroid and to chat about their shared passion.




Do you remember your first Polaroid cameras? When did you get it?
We were a bit of losers – it was at the same time when the Polaroid company stopped producing the cameras and the film material. We purchased some of the old Polaroid cameras along with a couple of packages of the film on eBay. Before we even finished our first films their price had radically increased so we got over the excitement very soon. But then we discovered The Impossible Project, a company of buffs, who started making the films again and we seized the opportunity – it was wonderful experience, since their first films were literally experimental and the photos didn’t turn out the way we assumed. That way Polaroid gained utterly new magic for us.

You’ve been dealing with Polaroids for quite a long time. What have changed ever since?
So awfully lot! Considering that the guys from The Impossible Project had had a great succes with their films, the production started at big and nowadays they make films that are unthinkably better. A bit of an adventure has disappeared that way though. On the other hand, the films still keep this certain waywardness, the typical colourfulness and unsharpness and so Polaroid has become a phenomenon again. We’d stuck to it and over the years we found that we were not alone in that slightly unusual hobby – and so we started writing about Polaroids, refurbishing and selling them, exhibiting the photographs and organize workshops… those are the origins of Polagraph.

Polagraph was created by the combination of three different brands (PolaroidLove, Paragraph and my dear deer). How did you all get together?
It was clear that just the Polaroids wouldn’t be enough to run the place – and so we got together with the girls whose projects we loved. Karolína from Paragraph makes some beautiful handmade sketchbooks, diaries and photoalbums, whereas Kristin from my dear deer refurbishes old Soviet cameras which she decorates with new playful textures and motives. We amend each other very well and we all got keen of the common work immediatelly.

Polagraph doesn’t work just as a shop, but also as a little gallery. Do your exhibitions focus just on instant photography? How do you choose the artists?
The only condition we established was that the photos had to be created the chemical way. It doesn’t matter whether it is a Polaroid or classical analogue photography. Of course, we require that the collection of photos makes sense as a whole - and that we like it, obviously. Our gallery is thus open to everyone – we definitely don’t act as a gallery that gets satisfied only by the kinds of Helmut Newton etc.

Who are your customers? Do the professional photographers deal with Polaroid as well?
It is strange in a way, but they do. Most of them remember Polaroids from the time when they were used as an exposure preview before the actual photo was taken. Now it doesn’t make any sense anymore, as the Polaroid picture is uncomparably more expensive. However, Polaroid still appeals to professional photographers – either with the impossibility of copying and manipulation or with the unusual colours and sharpness. Anyway, majority of the customers are young buffs, who fell in love with the Polaroid magic in the time of the rebirth caused by The Impossible Project.

Do you guys photograph also digitally, or are you loyal to chemical - analogue photography?
We photograph with everything we can! We’re not such fanatics, who would devastate every digital camera that comes by. On the contrary, we started taking photos with digital cameras and it’s fairly obvious that those are much handier and more practical. The analogue photography though has an irresistible magic to us, perhaps a bit nostalgic, but that makes it even more enticing – as if it gives a photography a sense it has once lost.

(Michal Čáp, Polagraph co-owner)

 




Contact Opening hours
 
+420 777 717 569
+420 604 564 707
 
Monday - Friday: 11:00 - 18:30
 
 
 
 
 
















































Spud. is an unconventional Prague city guide, that highlights its interesting spots and local businesses that are really worth visiting. With a Polaroid camera, we’re mapping four different areas: food and drinks, shops, workplaces of creative people and architecture. Spud. is focused on fresh places with unique atmosphere, cafés with the best coffee, shops with the finest goods, workshops and studios of the most skilled designers and architectural attractions with the greatest charm. Spud. is also mainly about people, who stand behind these projects. Without their invention and courage to fulfill their dreams Prague would be a much poorer place. That’s why we’re so grateful to all of them!
 
Tereza a Michal
info@spud.cz / 728 764 380