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Bill Viola: The Eye of the Heart


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Product Details

  • DVD
  • Publisher: BBC (January 1, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9085140595
  • ISBN-13: 978-9085140597
  • Product Dimensions: 7.1 x 5.4 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.9 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,639,516 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Nicholas Croft on April 23, 2006
Format: DVD
"Bill Viola: The Eye of the Heart", directed by Mark Kidel for the BBC and Arte France, is a sixty-minute documentary on the life and work of this pioneering video artist.

Mr. Viola was educated in Experimental Film at Syracuse University, where he also studied Electrical Engineering, Literature, Mysticism and Electronic Music. He began his artistic career, in the early 1970's, by producing intensely personal single-channel video pieces for alternative spaces. He now conceives large-scale museum installations, which feature emotionally charged imagery, created primarily in a controlled studio setting.

The documentary partly serves as a retrospective of Bill Viola's entire career. Brief excerpts from a wide range of his works are thoughtfully incorporated into the narrative. The documentary is also partly autobiographical, with Mr. Viola providing the primary narration throughout the majority of the work.

The film begins with some of Bill Viola's earliest childhood memories and then gradually introduces its viewers to the specific philosophies which helped to guide his artistic process over the years. A crucial turning point occurred in 1983, with "Room for St. John of the Cross". Viola felt that the attitude that one has, towards external adversity, is ultimately the only thing under our personal control. So with this piece, he moved from a philosophy of social perfection, to one of self-perfection.

Two recurring themes appear within the documentary: A visit to the Church of Saint Francis, in Assisi, Italy, where the artist discusses the dream-like three-dimensional frescoes of Giotto, a revolutionary artist of the Renaissance. Another trip was made to an isolated desert setting near the artist's California home.
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Bill Viola is one of my favorite artists. This is a very nice set but it does not show some of my favorite installations / videos he has exhibited. Unfortunately I don't think they exist for sale so this is the best set of his works that I have found so far.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By swypequay on August 11, 2014
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
My girlfriend told me to watch this. There is a Singaporean artist called Ho Tzu Nyen who has a similar style. Impressive coming from Singapore
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