Errors Hit Orient
In 1969, B.S. Johnson published The Unfortunates, a novel following a sportswriter sent to a city to report a football match only to find himself confronted by ghosts from his past. As “a better solution to the problem of conveying the mind’s randomness than the imposed order of a bound book,” the author published the novel in twenty-five loose, stapled sections, in order that any reading of the book would produce a different sequence of events, part authored by Johnson, part by chance. The novel is loosely autobiographical, since Johnson wrote weekly football reports for The Observer (between 1963 and 1965). Evans invited the British designer, artist, writer, and editor Will Holder to read the football reports to a musical accompaniment. Eight were selected and scored for speech with eight improvised themes, played “bottleneck” on bass guitar. These were augmented by two modular loops, recorded at different lengths to addle the structure and generate an aleatory composition in the manner of The Unfortunates .
B.S. Johnson's newspaper reports published in Bulletin 9 of The Serving Library, edited by Chris Evans
Performed at PRAXES Center for Contemporary Art, Berlin, 2015; Kunstverein Koln, 2015; Liverpool Biennial, 2014; Bloomberg Space, 2014; Wysing Arts Centre, 2013; The Northern Charter, 2013; Institute of Jamais Vu, 2013. To be published as a 12" vinyl record in 2019.