Illustrated Law Enforcement Training Targets, Circa 1982 – 1988

In the early 1980s, an officer of the Judicial Police of Belgian city Liège, Francis Dorao, began seeking a cost-effective method for providing more realistic simulations of high-risk situations for police target training, claiming that the traditional black silhouette targets did not adequately prepare officers to face actual human opponents or to make the split-second decisions necessary when distinguishing between an armed threat and an innocent bystander…

Shoulder Pads in Fashion, 1979 – 1989

The shoulder pad—whose origins lay in the protective padding used in military uniforms—first became a feature of female fashion in the build-up to and during the Second World War. Perhaps in response to the militarization of society then underway, its expressionist lines were introduced by prominent designers like Elsa Schiaparelli, whose work was heavily influenced by the surrealism of Cocteau and Dalí…

“Solo Me Muevo Por Dinero” (“I Only Move for Money”) by Xalan, 1984

“Solo Me Muevo Por Dinero” is the work of Spanish brothers Xeno and Tucho Baladon, known collectively as Xalan. The Euro disco duo released only two 12” singles, this and 1987’s Revolution Without Solution. The acquisitive, upwardly-mobile young urban professionals who became known as Yuppies in the early 1980s made their appearance in Spain at the tail end of an explosion of popular creativity…

Vanishing Point: How the Light Grid Defined 1980s Futurism

By Richard McKenna

Of all the visual shorthand for a particular type of outmoded futurism, one of the most immediately recognizable—like the chrome lettering with which it is often paired—must be the light grid. Usually depicted as a network of glowing straight lines receding in perspective against a black background, occasionally with the outlines of mountains or the blush of dawn visible on the horizon…