January 8, 2009
In what seems like forever ago, I reported on Bob Nanna’s chain of Polaroid images which capture Somebodies and Nobodies alike in a chain that started nearly 8 years ago — March 3rd 2001, with a photo of Bob at Second City in Chicago. Bob, at that point, was with the band Braid, and the photo chain weaves it’s way through a number of musicians you most certainly know.
Mr Nanna, who is clearly on a New Years resolution streak, is now SCANNING each one for posterity’s sake and allowing the general public to see it online — both on Facebook and Flickr.
Quite a task.
The best part about the Flickr portion is that there’s also a brief description of each photo in case you don’t immediately recognize (or wouldn’t recognize) who’s in the photo.
03/09/01 – Second City, Chicago IL
This is me. I look young and happy… just like the pic of George Wendt to my left.
03/10/01 – The Rave, Milwaukee WI
This is Rob, although back then everyone called him Robbie. He played bass in the Get Up Kids but lately, you’ve probably seen him scouring the globe (and your tv sets) as the bass player of Spoon! Together we probably listened to ‘The Lonesome Crowded West’ one thousand times during our European tour.
June 9, 2008
People take pictures of each other / Just to prove that they really existed.
Bob Nanna (Braid, Hey Mercedes, City on Film) has allowed the world to see his on-going “Never-Ending Polaroid” project, now on display until July 8th at the Threadless retail store on Broadway. Nanna, along with tourmate Brian Shorttall came up with the idea nearly a decade ago, and have kept the visual string going much longer than anyone ever anticipated.
It should be stressed that these are Polaroid images, which is significant in a few ways. Firstly, I like the juxtaposition of the medium; the immediate gratification a Polaroid image provides, combined with the longevity and diligence this project demanded. Also, because these are Polaroids, each one of these photos in one-of-a-kind, unedited, and unphotoshopable, pulled from the camera by Bob (or in some cases Brian), and most likely shared with the subject before it was dutifully filed away.
On one level, the project can be appreciated by scope alone. I can’t imagine years of lugging a camera around, and keeping track of EVERY picture its ever taken (as well as the name and relationship to the subject). But a further significance is embodied in the photos because Nanna, a journeyman of the emo/indie scene, is behind the lens. The names and faces of recent rock history pop up in-between Bob’s family, friends, co-workers and roommates. Keep your eyes peeled for members of Fugazi, Death Cab for Cutie, Jets to Brazil, Weezer, Get Up Kids and a bazillion other indie bands and kids captured in a never-ending string of picture-in-picture.