VHS Video Cover Art

Be Kind, Rewind Be pre­pared for an un­fet­tered del­uge of nos­tal­gia for those long-for­got­ten days of the eye-catch­ing video cas­sette case

ImagineFX: Sci-fi & Fantasy Art magazine - - Inspiration Books - editor Thomas Hodge Pub­lisher Schif­fer Pub­lish­ing Price £29 Web www.schif­fer­books.com Avail­able Now

the youth of the 1980s lurked in video shops, eyes keenly scan­ning wall af­ter wall of scream­ing cover de­signs, each tape beg­ging to be watched, re­wound and re­turned.

The change­able artistry of hordes of video cover de­sign­ers pro­vides food for thought for any­one with an eye for com­mer­cial de­sign, but let’s be hon­est here: more copies of this book are go­ing to be sold in the spirit of camp nos­tal­gia than as a sin­cere re­spect for the kind of artist who came up with, say, the saucy tableau for for­got­ten erotic com­edy Odd­balls.

From the gaudy to the tawdry, the overblown to the down­right tacky, this book has it all. The art is pre­sented with­out com­ment as high-qual­ity scans, but some­times it’s good to let no-holds barred im­agery do all the talk­ing. In his in­tro­duc­tion, editor Thomas Hodge says he “based this col­lec­tion purely on artis­tic merit”. How big was the re­ject pile, we won­der…

It’s telling that the book’s cre­ators are too young to have worked in the in­dus­try at the time, mak­ing this more of a hipster love let­ter to a de­funct for­mat than a ret­ro­spec­tive on be­half of the artists them­selves. Hav­ing said this, it’s touch­ing that most of the orig­i­nal de­sign­ers have been tracked down and cred­ited. Movie geeks over 30 will flip for this.

Mir­rored shades, sweaty mus­cles and a no-non­sense ex­pres­sion re­veal all you need to know about The En­forcer II.

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