Bill Viola

Bill Viola is an american contemporary video art. Viola’s artistic expression depends upon sound, electronic and image technology in New Media, for this he is considered a leading figure in the Contemporary art movement. Viola’s biggest influences were human experiences such as the aspects of consciousness, birth and death. ’The Crossing’ is a piece of video art, projected onto a large screen, practically taking up the whole wall, in the middle of the room. On one side of the room,  a man walks in extremely slow motion and eventually coming to a stop. The figure is gradually surrounded in flames until he disappears. One the other side the same figure walks and stops, water starts to drip on his head then builds up to a complete down pour, again he disappears. It is clear that nature is one of the main themes in this piece. The use of the natural elements in contrast with each other creates a lot of impact. This suggests that another theme might be power, the way that both water and fire can completely engulf him suggests a sense of power and superiority the natural elements have over the figure. I feel that Viola has been quite successful in this piece as he has been very clear at conveying the meaning behind it.


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