London, England : 1981

144 hours continuous actuation at A.C.M.E. Gallery, London.

11 – 17 January 1981

“It was a 144 hour continuous performance/installation or actuation (a term I’ve coined and prefer) – it was perhaps the first of the really long ones I’ve done, lasting several days. The Gallery was open 24 hours a day. There was some minimal eating and sleeping (though some later works involve none). The gallery had a shop front, so that passers-by could see what was inside. This proved useful, as over the 6 days and nights a relationship developed between the regular passers-by and the work (as well as with those who came specifically to see it – also with construction workers on the building site opposite). The work involved ‘treading the mill’ for a ‘working week’, sometimes clothed, sometimes half clothed, sometimes naked. Some came into the gallery and stood looking. Others sat silently, for long periods. Others wanted to engage in discussion. Numerous people kept returning, wanting to communicate.”

Alastair MacLennan, 1989. From “BODY SPACE IMAGE – Notes towards improvisation and performance” by Miranda Tufnell and Chris Crickmay.