Bill Viola - The Sleep of Reason (Installation view with the artist), 1988
"On a wooden chest in a large empty room, a black and white monitor shows a close-up view of a person sleeping. His night sounds are softly heard. A vase with white roses, a small lamp, and a digital clock are also on the chest tabletop. The floor of the room is carpeted and the space illuminated. Suddenly, the lights cut out and the room is plunged into total darkness. Large color moving images are seen covering three of the walls and a loud disturbing sound of moaning and roaring fills the space. Just as suddenly, the lights come back on and the room returns to normal. It is as if a momentary glimpse to another, parallel world has appeared, the dark underside of a familiar well-lit environment. The blackouts occur at random periods, behaving like unpredictable "image seizures" from some incurable schizophrenic affliction of the room. Lasting only seconds, they can occur from several seconds to several minutes apart, impossible to anticipate. The three projections of imagery on the walls are from a single videotape. Images include fires burning out of control throughcity buildings, fierce attack dogs spotlit and lunging at the camera, wild movement through a forest at night, moving X-rays of human beings and animals, and a provoked owl flying into the camera lens."