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Bill Viola: Love/Death - The Tristan Project


In 2004, the opera scene was taken by storm by the ground-breaking production of Richard Wagner’s opera Tristan und Isolde in Los Angeles.

This book offers a behind-the-scenes look at how the visionary American artist Bill Viola created four hours of video as a visual complement to this profound psychological drama. It also tells the story of its commissioning by the then Paris Opera director Gerard Mortier, who pushed the boundaries of what opera could be by inviting a trinity of California-based creatives to re-imagine a Tristan und Isolde for our times. Having just opened the now iconic Frank Gehry-designed Walt Disney Concert Hall, this was a bold project for the Los Angeles Philharmonic to take on, but it was one which catapulted them into the world of music and breath-taking visuals. The fully staged opera that resulted has been seen in Paris, Toronto, Madrid, Tokyo, Kobe, and concert versions in LA, New York, Rotterdam, London, Helsinki, Stockholm, and St Petersburg, and the revolutionary four-hour video and visuals created by Bill Viola to accompany this opera lives on through this beautifully illustrated book.

Editor: Kira Perov
Authors: Peter Sellars, Mark Swed, Gerard Mortier,  Esa-Pekka Salonen, Bill Viola
Publisher: Mercatorfonds
Distributed by: Yale University Press
Printed in Belgium
Format: 22 x 28 cm, hardcover
Number of pages: 128
Languages: English and French
ISBN EN 9780300270174
ISBN FR 9789462303430

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