Tamar Harpaz: SHHHH!


SHHHH! is a sound-based installation that deals with how to reconstruct the memory of sound in vacuum conditions. The project is a collaboration with composer Asaf Hazan and includes text by Tamar Harpaz: 

“Something is licking my toes. I feel its teeth. I hear it purring. Is it one of my cats? Through the darkness I see its glowing eyes. It’s bigger than a cat but smaller than a tiger – possibly a leopard. When she starts talking I realize it’s a female. Her name is Shlomzion. The last surviving leopardess in the Judean desert. Her mouth opens and a loud roar is heard through the land echoing back into my apartment, shaking its walls.

I struggle with the leopardess, determined to silence her. A neighbor is listening behind the wall, collecting evidence, recording our every move. Her nails slash the walls with a vocal screech. I quickly cover the room with an old carpet, a mattress, some empty card boxes – whatever I can find. I pray the insulation will help. If we are quiet enough perhaps she’ll go unnoticed, and could stay.

Instantly the sounds are dead and dry. I can’t even recall my own house by the sound of it. No echoes or depth to the voices in my head. A key dropping in a church or in a small room will reflect the same place in my mind. Shlomzion moves restlessly, circling the space like a cage. I know there is no choice. I strip the walls of carpeting, leaving concrete and bare stone. Now the walls are trembling; resonating as we scream into the night, fight across the sea, all the way back home.”

Artis provided support for this project through the Project Grants Program. Check back for updates on the development of this project and join our email list or follow us online for ongoing information on this and other artists’ work.