Artist Tim Youd has undertaken the task of retyping one hundred classic novels, staging his durational performances at locations relevant to the author’s life or the plot of the novel. During much of the month of July, Youd will retype Raymond Chandler’s The Long Goodbye in the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego’s (MCASD) Krichman Gallery, overlooking the ocean—not far from the La Jolla residence where Chandler wrote the novel.
Employing the same make and model typewriter used by the author, Youd types each novel on a single sheet of paper, which is backed by an additional sheet. The artist runs this doubled paper through the typewriter repeatedly, until every word of the novel has been retyped. Upon completion, the two pages—a positive and negative image—are mounted as a diptych, representing two pages of an open book. A selection of completed diptychs from the first year of Youd’s 100 Novels project will be presented in Meyer Gallery, along with a number of his eccentric typewriter “portraits,” which take the form of wall-bound sculptures fashioned from cardboard. Taken together, these works stand as the insistently material residue of Youd’s performances, which last weeks and months at a time, but are ultimately ephemeral.
Tim Youd: The Long Goodbye is on view, May 17-August 31, 2014, at the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego.