whispering volumes (2002)
M. Simon Levin with Bobbi Kozinuk
A site-specific commission for the Surrey Public Library as part of Surrey
Art Gallery's show Art Among Our Shelves, this interactive copper book
cart whispered stories when a book was selected. Selected community
members volunteered the titles of books that were dear to their heart.
Those chosen titles, some of which were controversial and in other
languages, were acquired by the SPL and put out on display on the
interactive cart. I recorded various community members whispering
selected passages from their chosen books. When a library visitor chose to
check out one of the books off the cart, they then replaced the book with a
meaningful selection from the library stacks. This new book was re-coded
to "display status" and then put onto the interactive cart and the desired
book is released. Thus creating a specialized community exchange system
within a larger institutional exchange system.