Powerhouse, 2008

Powerhouse, 2008

Powerhouse (22 mins. 2008) is a time-lapse film with a spoken word sound track, representing the performance of an 8-week long live word association game at Cambridge University Library. The initial word ‘powerhouse’ was displayed above the door in the entrance hall. Free word associations were collected on-line and on-site, of which the most common response was selected (at set times) for display next, and so on, creating a meandering multi-authored word composition. The University Library is a copyright library, carefully guarding access (women undergraduates were not allowed in until 1947) and keeping one copy of every book published in the British Isles (from knitting pattern to academic tome) for posterity. The film creates an oblique and incidental portrait, in the form of associative word and image combinations.

(technical assistance Dylan Banarse, edited by Tim Sidell, sound design by Nick Ryall)

Powerhouse (film, 22 mins, 2008), clip of first 3 minutes

powerhouse index grab

Powerhouse online word index

UL card

Temporary library card and welcome offer