Public House is a multi layered exploration of memory, community and social reinvention, inspired by the community take over of The Ivy House in London (SE15).
Artist Sarah Turner lives opposite The Ivy House and has been documenting key moments of the community take over since April 2012 when the pub's staff were given a few days notice of eviction and closure; the cherished Ivy House had been sold for conversion into flats.
The creativity and energy of the community ensured this did not happen: the sale was blocked through an English Heritage listing, the pub was registered as the first Asset of Community Value in the UK, then triumphantly purchased.
The rest is history: the Ivy House re-opened in August 2013 as London’s first co-operatively owned Community Boozer.
In the same way that the Ivy House has become a shape shifting venue – hosting events as diverse as indie music, folk music, performance art, swing classes, knitting circles, big band Sunday roasts and samba workshops for pre schoolers - the film is a shape shifting genre hybrid that moves from documentary events, through to different forms of community participation that are rooted in pub culture – in this case, spoken word and performance poetry – to a minimalist opera that is composed of ambient sound and the collective voice.
Public House is a new feature length film by award winning artist and academic, Sarah Turner, supported by FLAMIN productions.