Constantinos Taliotis' versatile VHS Cyprus project over the past three years has been aimed at unearthing, preserving and disseminating the history and buoyancy of the VHS industry in Cyprus, shedding light on the obscured past of straight-to-video movies, which vanished when the format became obsolete. This "library of lost images", as Taliotis puts it, has led to a series of actions, including a local VHS festival, a presentation at the Berlinale, and eventually a new body of work.
The history of the VHS is intertwined with the appearance of several new technologies (such as the VCR, the Teletext, the video game console) and aesthetic trends, which created a new domestic culture. The living-room was no longer a retreat from the outside world, but rather a space dedicated to entertainment and leisure.
Constantinos Taliotis was born in 1983 – the same year Nintendo launched its 8-bit home video game console NES. By that time, the Atari 2600 had invaded American households and newly domesticated ex-arcade games had filled the screens of TVs. In Paradise ProductionsTaliotis revisits the visual culture he grew up with, by introducing bitmaps, bright colors, and angular polygons into his work. At the center of the exhibition is Milano, a recent, Memphis-inspired sculptural installation that leaves the audience with a powerful feeling of déja vu. Resembling a page from a 1984 issue of the House Beautiful magazine, the exhibition recalls how domestic technologies of the day were collectively imagined and promoted. Taliotis presents us a playful interior, tracing the trail of the home video era.