UNCG Campus Weekly

Campus Weekly is published each Wednesday when classes are in session. In the summer, it is published biweekly.

One typewriter, one novel will yield one remarkable piece of visual art

When someone’s typing, maybe just leave them be? With performance artist Tim Youd, the more observers the better.

This week through Friday, artist Tim Youd will be performing a new entry in his “100 Novels” series at the Weatherspoon Art Museum. For each entry in the series, Youd retypes a 20th-century novel at a location of historical significance to its writing. Youd writes on a single sheet of paper, with another under it, that is repeatedly run through the typewriter. Once finished, the two pieces of paper are mounted side-by-side as a diptych.

Youd describes his process as “ecstatic reading”, and as an attempt to “experience deep engagement with the book.” Although the typed pages, containing the entire text of the novel in tattered and illegible form, are the result of the project, the core is the performance itself. Over a course of days, Youd publicly reads and re-types his chosen novels, displaying the intense focus and “out-of-body experience” provoked by deep connection to art and literature. Through this exhibition, Youd reveals the intimate, often secret connection between artist and art-in-production, and displays it to the audience as performance.

While at WAM, Youd will be retyping North Carolina author Daphne Athas’s “Entering Ephesus.” This exhibition is part of a three-novel retyping Youd is performing in North Carolina this Fall. For more information on the artist and his stay at UNCG, visit the entry on WAM’s website. In addition, The Hanes Gallery at Wake Forest University will be showing a selection of Youd’s completed re-typings, and related artwork. For more information on that exhibit, go here.