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"An Attempt at Exhausting a Place in Hong Kong (After Perec)"

Technique: speakers, media players, amplifiers, voice, text

Kill the Silence / LUFF Does Hong Kong Festival
HKICC Lee Shau Kee School of Creativity
Hong Kong
http://creativehk.edu.hk/
http://kill-the-silence.net/
http://hongkong.luff.ch/

May 11–15, 2016


The installation takes its cue from Georges Perec's landmark work "An Attempt at Exhausting a Place in Paris," where he sat in cafes over a three-day period on the Saint-Sulpice Square in Paris observing and writing down all the details of events transpiring there.

Reading Perec's book, filled with what might pass as utterly mundane and uninteresting details about day-to-day life on a typical square in Paris, made me think about what makes up a place. What are all the various spaces and events which comprise the texture of the places we inhabit and often pass through without even noticing them?

In "An Attempt at Exhausting a Place in Hong Kong (After Perec)" I wanted to investigate a disused student canteen at the HKICC Lee Shau Kee School of Creativity. What makes this place what it is? The sounds? The ghosts? The energy there.

I spent one day there "recording" the space, with my thoughts, thinking about what once went on in the canteen, what transpires now. These observations will be written down and recorded by my voice and then played back in the space, creating a feedback loop of the then and now, a mirroring of the place folding in on itself.


Some texts from the installation:

Resonating here
the voices
the world
outside.
Like sitting
in a giant
ear.


Steady breeze
blowing through
the courtyard
vibrating leaves
I have to imagine
their sound
moving silently
they give shape
to the air.


A machine starts
to hum
like a giant
insect.

Sonic worm?
Burrowing its
way through
the mid-day.


Much has been imagined today but what has actually been heard?

Sounds in my
head or sounds
outside?

The room listening
to me listening
to myself.

And so on
and so on.


 

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