Barbara Hitchcock, former Cultural Affairs director, joined Polaroid Corporation in the 1970s in a research and development capacity. In 1978 Hitchcock joined Polaroid’s international division publicity department, where she coordinated all the photographic requirements of the subsidiary publicity departments. Appearing as a Polaroid spokesperson on national and international television and radio broadcasts, she promoted new Polaroid films and hardware. Since 1982, Hitchcock was made responsible for the strategic marketing communications and program planning, development and execution of Polaroid’s cultural activities. She acquired fine art photographs for Polaroid, managed its multi-million dollar art collections and its traveling exhibitions.
She has been the curator of several exhibitions, including The Big Picture; Olivia Parker: Objects and Implications; Sightseeing: A Space Panorama, a collaboration with NASA; In Grand Perspective; Polaroid 50: Art and Technology; It’s a Dog’s Life: Photography by William Wegman; Fins, Wings and Other Such Things: Photographs from the Polaroid Collections; Ansel Adams & Edwin Land: Art, Science & Invention – Photographs from the Polaroid Collections; and Sanctuary: Anna Tomczak Photography. During the late 1980s and 1990s, she oversaw Polaroid’s 20×24-studio program, expanding both its artist support and commercial growth.