Immortalised – The Long Line

Immortalised: the people loved, left and lost in our landscape

A free exhibition at the Workshop, Lambeth, London

30 August – 16 September 2018

Immortalised is a free exhibition by Historic England, questioning who and how we remember. Among the memorials around the country, where are the women? The minorities? The working people?

Earlier this year Historic England ran a competition for artists to find new ways of remembering events, people and identities in the public realm. Among the ten chosen for this exhibition was my idea, The Long Line.

The Long Line by Katrina Porteous and Peter Zinovieff, with the voices of Northumbrian fishermen and women, and singing by John Dixon.

The Long Line is a sound installation consisting of five minutes of poetry and electronic music, commemorating the fishing communities of the Northumberland coast, who for centuries worked the ‘long lines’ from boats called ‘cobles’. This type of fishing involved an intimate, sustainable relation to nature, but came at a terrible cost, especially to women, whose unpaid job it was to bait 1,400 hooks a day. The first engines, introduced into sailing cobles in 1918, marked the beginning of mechanisation, which eventually freed women – not, for some, until after World War II – and which also had wider, ultimately unsustainable, consequences.

Peter Zinovieff’s electronic music uses my archive recordings of local dialect voices, and derives instrumental sounds from a traditional Northumbrian folksong, sung by fisherman John Dixon.

The original idea was for a multi-channel piece, which could be located in public spaces at harbours and beaches on the north Northumberland coast. We would love to develop this idea further.

A stereo version can be heard every 20 minutes, as a small part of the Immortalised exhibition.

The Long Line - K Porteous 3

Immortalised: the people loved, left and lost in our landscape


30 August until 16 September 2018

Wednesday to Sunday 10am to 5pm


The Workshop, 26 Lambeth High Street, Lambeth, London SE1 7AG

London Underground: Vauxhall (Victoria line) and Lambeth North (Bakerloo + Northern lines)

Train: Vauxhall

Bus: routes 3, 77, 344, 360, 507 and C10