The Greatest Icon of New York City / by greg brophy

There are a lot of icon buildings, places and people in NYC. People will argue over which one is the most iconic, for me their is only one. For the last year and more, I have been photographing this icon everywhere I have seen them. I am currently working on a project where I am photographing things in NYC that are both iconic but also disappearing. This icon was mentioned by the New York Times as "one of those endangered artifacts."

Using film from The Impossible Project I took 64 instant photos and combined them into one large alter to the Greek Cup. You know the ones you see in the hands of all the cops in Law and Order, NYPD Blue, Mad Men, Brad Pitt in Seven and about 100 other films and tv shows.

The cup was originally designed by Leslie Buck of the Sherri Cup Co. in 1963. At that time a lot of diners were Greek owned and it was made to appeal to them. It was later copied by many other cup companies. It's original name is the Anthora and in 1994, at the height of it's popularity, they sold 500 million making it perhaps the most successful cup design in history.

To me, nothing says New York City more to me then the Classic Greek Cup with "WE ARE HAPPY TO SERVE YOU" and expressing the true nature of New Yorkers. I choose to photography these with Instant film because it matches the nature of the subject matter and time period perfectly. Both have almost died out and have been brought back by an audience that loves them. 

The images are all cut and peeled from the original Polaroid backing and reassembled onto a wood board at 28x27 inches. Click to see all the glorious details.

Taxonomy of Greek Cups