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December 16, 2021

Amazing Polaroid Shots Taken by Maripol on the Set of ‘Downtown 81’

In 1977, young stylist and jewelry designer Maripol and her then-boyfriend Edo Bertoglio moved from Paris to New York. The self-described “new pioneers of a decadent decade” fit right into a city that had been abandoned and left to fend for itself, its denizens reveling in the limitless creativity that freedom often brings.

Polaroids taken by Maripol on the original set of Downtown 81.

That December, Bertoglio gave Maripol a Polaroid SX-70 camera for Christmas. Long before digital revolutionized the industry, the Polaroid offered instantaneous results, producing a unique print within minutes.

As art director for Fiorucci, the hottest Italian fashion house of the time, Maripol became a fixture on the scene, collaborating with the likes of Debbie Harry, Grace Jones, Keith Haring, Madonna, Sade, and Jean-Michel Basquiat, who went on to star in Downtown 81, a film she produced and art directed.

“There was a curiosity towards Polaroid. Everyone wanted to know, ‘What is that?’ It’s not like point a camera with a huge lens like Ron Galella. It was more natural,” Maripol recalled.

(Photos by © Maripol)


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