Long Relay

9 October 2007

This coming Saturday I’m writing in a project called Long Relay that Adrian Heathfield and I have set up for the Serpentine Gallery in London as part of their Experiment Marathon.

Long Relay is a kind of real-time call-and-response writing project conducted over the internet in which an initial text (written by me and frequently updated online as I write) is then re-worked, re-written or entirely re-invented by the next writer, and whose work in-turn in re-written by the next and so on, continuously over a 24 hour period. I start writing at 1pm Saturday 13th October and the project closes at the same time on Sunday 14th with a final piece by Adrian. In between (and working three hour shifts) are Tom McCarthy, Deborah Levy, Mike Harrison and Fiona Templeton (plus two more in final process of confirmation!). You’ll be able to follow the whole project, live on the internet as well as being able to access the individual parts/chapters as they are completed.

I’m looking forward to the project and nervous about it in a way, although, it being a live thing and something I want to approach very much as live there’s nothing I can really do to prepare. I plan to sit down with no plan and simply see where I go. If things work out I will have one thing to guide or inspire me me – a question provided by Olafur Eliasson whose Pavilion with architect Kjetil Thorsen is the physical base for Experiment Marathon.

It’s great to be joined in Long Relay by Tom McCarthy who I’ve met just a couple of times and whose Remainder I liked a lot and wrote about in the Notebook here. As well as Fiona Templeton whose You – The City was a huge inspiration when I saw it maybe 20 years ago, I’m also really happy to have writers whose contributions to Barbara Campbell’s ongoing 1001 Nights Cast have been so great. Long Relay definitely wouldn’t have been in my mind as a concept without the inspiring introduction to live writing, and text as call and response that Barbara’s project has been. I’ll be writing again for 1001 in a month or so.

More details on Experiment Marathon which also features work and presentations by Marina Abramović; Simon Baron-Cohen; John Brockman; Peter Cook; Sophie Fiennes; Armand Leroi; Gustav Metzger; Steven Pinker; Pedro Reyes; Matthew Ritchie; Israel Rosenfield; Tomas Saraceno; Angela Sirigu; Andreas Slominski; Luc Steels; and Lewis Wolpert, at the link above.

And finally if anyone happens to be in London for Frieze my video show One Hundred and Three People is still running at Sketch until 3 November.

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