December 19, 2019
Instructor in Cinema and Media Studies Cecilia Cornejo presented on the progress on her on-going project, The Wandering House at Northfield Public Library. Professor Cornejo presented the background to the project, the current progress, and the planned next steps. A retrofitted ice-fishing house, The Wandering House is a mobile audio-recording studio that invites reflection on home and belonging. Professor Cornejo and her student workers, Sergio Demara ‘20 and Arya Misra ‘22, spent the summer of 2019 collecting the voices of Northfield residents as they considered these issues. They brought The Wandering House to a variety of locations during the summer to capture a diversity of voices. Over 29 days in the summer, they collected 225 recordings (some of which feature more than one participant) totaling nearly 40 hours of audio recording. Professor Cornejo has just begun to delve into this wealth of material and her students are busy transcribing the audio.
For the audience at the Northfield Public Library, Professor Cornejo shared a 15-minutes sound collage of several people’s responses to the prompts regarding home and belonging. The collage gave a sense of the range of responses, with participants aged 10-91 and a range of life experiences in Northfield. While some of the responses were lighthearted and elicited laughs from the audience, others were serious and the audience listened in attentive silence. Following the sound collage, Professor Cornejo shared her ideas for a final product, asking for feedback from the audience. In addition, she shared her plans to go back to the project’s partners and participants to involve them in the creation of a final product that is truly of and from the community.