Today the video camera is as commonplace as the television set. In the early years of cinema it was hard to distinguish amateur from professional films, as the first film-makers began with films made in private. In the early 1920s a distinct amateur film culture emerged. Film material constantly decreased in width, from initially 35-mm to 16-mm (1923), 9.5-mm (1921), and finally to only 8-mm (1932). 8-mm film established itself as the standard for home movies, and cine-camera productions became affordable for broad sections of the population.
The introduction of Super-8 film in 1963 and the Super-8 sound film cartridge in 1973 created ideal conditions for home movies, but the new technology of magnetic film recording on video cassettes introduced in the 1980s soon conquered the global market and heralded the swift end of conventional amateur filmmaking. In the space of just a few years video cameras and camcorders became very compact and were now available in the convenient size of cine-cameras; one minute of video cost only a fraction of one minute of film, and the images were immediately available on any television set. This ushered in the end of an epoch that had lasted for at least 85 years.
The exhibition documents a broad cross-section of amateur film technology (Diashow) from the first Acres Birtac of 1897 to the cameras of the 1980s. A film trailer gives insight into the changing world of 'home movies'.