Audio-visual compositions and public art

As part of the 2013 Merge Festival, Mark Logue and I were invited to produce a site-specific public artwork in the Bankside area. The result is ‘House of Pain’, an interactive light sculpture housed in a derelict High street building. The public were invited to have a cathartic yell or scream inside the building. Each scream generated an instant light composition that illuminated the entire building. The unique quality of each scream created the colour and movement of the light composition using bespoke software which analysed the sounds in real-time. House of Pain was open to the public from the 19th September until the 21st October 2013. An estimated 4000 people participated, mostly of them passers-by, local residents and workers. A total of 50 hours of screaming were recorded during the run.

“Tate Modern again supported the annual local MERGE festival, working with Better Bankside to produce artworks and interventions for the local community. A headline event was House of Pain, staged in a disused dental office, which attracted 24,000 people. Sixty per cent of these were local to the area and thirty-three per cent described themselves as working locally. This was one of many events bringing together local businesses, residents, workers and visitors to the Bankside area.” Tate Annual Report 2014

Exterior of the building.

A visitor screams in the House Of Pain

Close-up of the light installation

A visitor screams in the House Of Pain

  • Commission: Merge Festival
  • Festival Curator: Caroline Jones.
  • Sponsors: Illuminate Productions, Better Bankside and Tate Modern.
  • Lighting sponsorship: Static Light Company
  • Photography & Video footage: Tommophoto and Veronika Lukasova