Something very quiet

There is a certain feeling of content sadness that only comes at the end of a truly excellent book. When the last phrase is finished, it is routine to flip back through the pages, inhaling the musty scent of an old volume.  Running your fingers across the cover and down the spine of the latest bestseller you attempt to absorb the last little bits of prose through your fingertips. Deborah Pearson earnestly seeks to recreate this sacred relationship we have with books in her work, “Something Very Quiet is About to Happen.” Stationed at the Battersea Library, this part scavenger hunt, part installation, part performance art comes together haphazardly at first, but  the end result is truly pleasing. Pearson opens the piece by giving an awkward but brief tour of the library’s literature and reference sections,  handing you a short list of materials to find. What comes next is a lovely foray into the minds of the books we love. The core of this piece is lovingly placed, literally, in the books themselves. Pearson’s imagined correspondence stuck randomly in the most arbitrary holdings of the library perfectly personify the novels, anthologies of poetry, and graphic novels we flip through lazily, carefully study, or hungrily rip apart. In this literary meditation, don’t rush through Pearson books, her notes are best read closely and you’ll make the most of Pearson’s final quiet moment by taking your time with each one.


One Response

  1. Hi there!

    I just wanted to say thanks so much for this post. I just found it and very much enjoyed your description of and engagement with the piece. I especially like what you say about taking your time with the notes. One thing that really interested me in making the library piece was asking audiences to have a slower approach to a piece of performance/installation than they usually would. I think any library or used book store is best gone through slowly.

    Thank you so much for this.


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