Garden Marathon

real and imagined

Serpentine Pavilion

15 Oct 2011 - 11:00 AM to 16 Oct 2011 - 10:00 PM

Garden Marathon

Admission Free

The Serpentine Gallery Garden Marathon was the sixth in the Gallery's acclaimed Marathon series. This two-day event was an exploration of the concept of the garden.

Read more

A product of the creative encounter between the man-made and the natural, between order and disorder, the garden can offer productive metaphors for the interactions between human life and time, care, thought or space.

The event was directly inspired by the Serpentine Gallery Pavilion 2011, designed by Peter Zumthor. The encounter of architecture and garden created a contemplative space that was both set within - and meditatively separated from - the wider surroundings of Kensington Gardens.

Participations ranged from the fields of horticulture, design and architecture to explore the creation of gardens and their spatial, urban and scientific importance, through to works by artists and readings by poets and writers exploring the significance of the garden in our experience of the world.

Participants included:

Etel Adnan, Brian Aldiss, Maria Thereza Alves, Rosie Atkins, Yto Barrada and Sean Gullette, Gianfranco Baruchello, Gerry Bibby, Stefano Boeri, Andrea Branzi, John Brockman, Pablo Bronstein, Lizzie Carey-Thomas, Hélène Cixous, Emer Coleman, Pascal Cribier, Adam Curtis, David Deutsch, Elizabeth Diller, Jimmie Durham, Marcus du Sautoy, Brian Eno, Patrick Eyres, Hans-Peter Feldmann, FIELDCLUB, Sophie Fiennes, Adriaan Geuze, Jef Geys, Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster, Dan Graham, Rodney Graham, Fritz Haeg with Denise Withers, Zarina Hashmi, Will Holder, Jennifer Jacquet, Charles Jencks, Koo Jeong-A, Alison Knowles and Meghan DellaCrosse, Pablo León de la Barra, Jonas Mekas and David Ellis, Catherine Mosbach, muf architecture/art, Christian Philipp Müller, Peter Murray-Rust, Silke Otto-Knapp, Mark Pagel, Philippe Parreno, Giuseppe Penone, Julia Peyton-Jones, Alice Rawsthorn, Carissa Rodriguez and Avena Gallagher, David Rowan, Peter Saville and Anna Blessmann, Rüdiger Schöttle, Richard Sennett, Bas Smets, Paul Smith, Something & Son, Susan Stenger, Corin Sworn, Wolfgang Tillmans, Mierle Laderman Ukeles, Günther Vogt, Sophie von Cundale, Alex Waterman, Cerith Wyn Evans, Andrea Zanzotto and Qiu Zhijie.

As well as: The observer's guide to the Serpentine Gallery Garden Marathon - compiled in one voice, in the field, by a pool: Paul Becker, Ian Evans, Will Holder, John D. Millar, Francesco Pedraglio, Heather Phillipson, Natasha Soobramanien, Cally Spooner, Nick Thurston and Luke Williams.


12pm - 5pm

Julia Peyton-Jones, Hans Ulrich Obrist, Steffi Czerny & Marcel Reichart: Introductions

Wolfgang Tillmans: Ursuppe and Other Garden Pictures

Rosie Atkins: A History of Garden Design in 20 Minutes

Jef Geys: Quadra Medicinale: Weeds and Biodiversity

Gianfranco Baruchello: The Coefficient - The Garden as a Joint Agent

Hélène Cixous: Un vrai jardin - A Real Garden

Etel Adnan: The Spring Flowers Own

Patrick Eyres: Ian Hamilton Finlay and Little Sparta

Cerith Wyn Evans: Reading: Poems by Ian Hamilton Finlay

Alice Rawsthorn: Interviews Adriaan Geuze, Something & Son and FIELDCLUB

Adriaan Geuze

Something & Son: Born in a Shed

FIELDCLUB: Some Aspects of Neo-Agrosophy

Dan Graham: Museum as Garden/Garden as Museum

5pm - 10pm

Brian Aldiss: Interviewed by Hans Ulrich Obrist

Rodney Graham: Lobbing Potatoes at a Gong

Günther Vogt: Reality as Model as Reality

Rüdiger Schöttle: Theatergarden Bestiarium

Alison Knowles and Meghan DellaCrosse: Loose Pages

Pascal Cribier: Garden, Nature or Landscape?

Zarina Hashmi: Invisible Gardens

Elizabeth Diller: Agri-tecture

Fritz Haeg & Denise Withers: How a Garden can Change Your Life

Christian Philipp Müller: The New World

muf architecture/art: The Rehearsal

Peter Saville & Anna Blessmann: TV Blumen

Gerry Bibby: No Picnic (A Promenade of the Hearts), performed with Sophie

Corin Sworn: Out of Range

Rodney Graham: Lobbing Potatoes at a Gong

Susan Stenger: Ryoanji by John Cage


11am - 5pm

Marcus du Sautoy: Exploring the Mathematical Garden

John Brockman in Conversation with Brian Eno

Jennifer Jacquet: Shame Totem v.2.0

Mark Pagel: Cities as Gardens

Jimmie Durham: Berlin, April 2000

Paul Smith: Kew's Millennium Seed Bank: Supporting Innovation and Adaptation in Horticulture in a Changing World

Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster & Pablo León De La Barra: SAVAGE LAVA JUNGLES

David Rowan, Emer Coleman & Peter Murray-Rust: Walled Gardens vs. Open Spaces: The Tension at the Heart of the Internet

Stefano Boeri: A Planetary Kitchen Garden

Richard Sennett: Open and Closed: How Gardens Serve as Places for Reflection

Catherine Mosbach: Phase Shift Park

Giuseppe Penone: The Garden Begins when a Man Tramples the Soil

Silke Otto-Knapp: Recollections of a Happy Life, being the Autobiography of Marianne North, a reading

Charles Jencks: The Universe in the Landscape

Pablo Bronstein: In Conversation with Lizzie Carey-Thomas

5pm - 9pm

Sophie von Cundale: The Garden of Endemol

Jonas Mekas and David Ellis: Orvydas Garden

Adam Curtis: I Am not a Garden. I Am a Machine

Carissa Rodriguez & Avena Gallagher: Wowowee

Philippe Parreno & Bas Smets: CHZ

Mierle Laderman Ukeles: Transfer and Exchange: Proposal for 1 Million Participants to Participate in an Artwork for Freshkills Park, NYC: Public Offerings Made by All Redeemed by All

Yto Barrada & Sean Gullette: Sean Gullette Reads from Yto Barrada's "A Guide to Trees for Governors and Gardeners", with a Slideshow

Sophie Fiennes: 3a The Little House

Alex Waterman: Beacons of Ancestorship

With additional contributions by:

Maria Thereza Alves: ...sur l'herbe (homage à Domenico & Vincenzo Mancini)

David Deutsch: Why Are Flowers Beautiful?

Hans-Peter Feldmann: Christmas Tree

Will Holder: Pool (see back page)

Koo Jeong-A: Undisturbed Pools

Andrea Zanzotto

Reading by Hans Ulrich Obrist

Qiu Zhijie


Related Events / Exhibitions


Serpentine Gallery Pavilion 2011 by Peter Zumthor

1 Jul 2011 to 16 Oct 2011

The Serpentine Gallery Pavilion 2011 by Peter Zumthor was the architect's first completed building in the UK and included a specially created garden.

View Exhibition


Serpentine Pavilion

Poetry Marathon

17 Oct 2009 - 12:00 PM to 18 Oct 2009 - 10:00 PM

The Serpentine Gallery Poetry Marathon was an ambitious two-day poetry event taking place in London during Frieze Art Fair week and featuring unique performances from leading poets, writers, artists, philosophers, scholars and musicians.

View Event


Serpentine Pavilion

Royal Geographical Society, SW7 2AR

Map Marathon

16 Oct 2010 - 12:00 PM to 17 Oct 2010 - 10:00 AM

The Serpentine Gallery Map Marathon, the fifth in the Serpentine Gallery's series of Marathons, celebrated a number of key anniversaries: the 40th anniversary of the Serpentine Gallery, the 10th anniversary of the annual architecture commission, the Serpentine Gallery Pavilion, and the 2500th anniversary of the first, original Marathon, in 490 B.C.

View Event

Back to Top

real and imagined

Monday, 8th February 2016
Garden Marathon

Garden Marathon

Garden Marathon 2011 Zumthor Pavilion

Garden Marathon 2011 Zumthor Pavilion

Serpentine Gallery Garden Marathon 2011 (Saturday 15 and Sunday 16 October 2011) Pictured: Jonas Mekas, Orvydas Gardens. Photography © 2011 Polly Braden
Garden Marathon 2011 Zumthor Pavilion

Garden Marathon 2011 Zumthor Pavilion

Serpentine Gallery Garden Marathon 2011 (Saturday 15 and Sunday 16 October 2011) Pictured: Rodney Graham, Lobbing Potatoes at a Gong. Photography © 2011 Polly Braden.
Adam Curtis, On the occasion of Serpentine Gallery Garden Marathon

Adam Curtis, On the occasion of Serpentine Gallery Garden Marathon

Alice Rawsthorn, On the occasion of Serpentine Gallery Garden Marathon

Alice Rawsthorn, On the occasion of Serpentine Gallery Garden Marathon

Garden Marathon 2011 Zumthor Pavilion

Garden Marathon 2011 Zumthor Pavilion

Serpentine Gallery Garden Marathon 2011 (Saturday 15 and Sunday 16 October 2011) © 2011 Photography by Polly Braden