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art quotes by Bill Viola Bill Viola Quotes and Comments

Inspirational Art Quotes by the American video artist Bill Viola
born Bill Viola - USA - 25th of January, 1951 / Lives - USA
Popular Bill Viola works include video art that often attempts to depict or evoke strong emotions. Fire and water also feature in his work.
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"Bill Viola Quotes"


+ Human beings have always been creative. The guys who were making the pyramids.. and archaeological research has showed us this.. had little figurines made by the workers, to express their devotion to their god.

+ When you make a video of fire and of water, the resonance is incredible.. a flowing stream interpreted by flowing electrons. I was drawn to water intuitively, with a camera in my hand.. drawn to its pulsing waves and undulating surfaces, and of course, optically to the images it reflected.

+ When I started in video I was one of two or three dozen video artists in 1970. And now, to paraphrase Andy Warhol, everyone's a video artist. Video, through your cellphone and camcorder, has become a form of speech, and speech is not James Joyce. It's great, and to be celebrated, but it has to find its own level.

+ For the Persian poet Rumi, each human life is analogous to a bowl floating on the surface of an infinite ocean. As it moves along, it is slowly filling with the water around it. That's a metaphor for the acquisition of knowledge. When the water in the bowl finally reaches the same level as the water outside, there is no longer any need for the container, and it drops away as the inner water merges with the outside water. We call this the moment of death. That analogy returns to me over and over as a metaphor for ourselves.

+ Technology's not going to change the number of geniuses in the world, but there has been a whole middle zone of quite talented people who don't have that superhuman gift. Some of the lounge pianists I've heard are pretty good. They're not going to play Carnegie Hall, but they're pretty good.

+ Dawn and sunset are the times when Nature herself is unstable and in flux. The nocturnal world and the daytime world are meeting, and for a brief time coexisting. It's not a neat hard cut, but a blurred, irregular dissolve. These moments are the seams in existence through which we can get a glimpse of the deeper, fundamentally random, chance workings of a system in which we are only a small, insignificant player.

+ I like to keep the meanings in my work flowing and open.


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