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Work Samples

1. Front of house

MicroFiction RowHouse was my project to install 40+ very short stories in my home that tell the history of a fictional family who may have once lived there. Most stories were installed by means of the photocopy transfer method.

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About Joseph

Baltimore City

Joseph Young lives in Hampden, Baltimore. He is a writer and artist, and nearly always text and image overlap in his work. He has written stories to adorn the walls of art galleries, smaller texts to decorate trees and the forest floor, and he has made collages and other works on paper, wood, and other surfaces in which text is both commentary and form.  His fiction has appeared in Easter Rabbit, a book of microfictions, in the chapbook 5 drawings of the maryland sky, in the self-... more

MicroFiction RowHouse

For more than a decade, I have been installing my extremely short stories on the walls of private homes and art galleries. By means of a process called photocopy transfer, I print these site-specific stories directly on the walls, as well as on wood panels, canvas, paper, and other materials.

i've long wanted to occupy an entire Baltimore rowhouse with these microfictions (10-50 words), installing stories that tell the history of a fictional family who lived in that home—their lives, hopes, trials, happiness and sorrows.

Recently, I decided to take the matter into my own home, using that familiar and intimate space to create MicroFiction RowHouse. After installing 40+ stories, I share my home with this fictional family and its spirits, writing many stories and placing them on a variety of surfaces in every room. The stories are of many shapes and sizes to match the space they are printed on, the room they occupy, and tale they tell.

In a bid to fund MicroFiction RowHouse, I launched a GoFundMe campaign. The campaign is meant to fund the project space, the time, materials, and a large series of public events.

Easter Rabbit

Easter Rabbit is a collection of microfictions that was released in late 2009 by Publishing Genius Press. The book was widely reviewed in the independent press community to good acclaim and was chosen in 2010 as the City Paper Best New Book by a Local Author.

In 2009 I organized a release party for Easter Rabbit that included original performances of stories from Easter Rabbit as acted by musician Caleb Stein and artist Linda Franklin and adapted for the stage and directed by writer Nancy Murray. The release party also included original music from the band Sweatpants (Adam Robinson and Jamie Perez) and art from painters Magnolia Laurie, Laren Boilini, Luca DiPierro, Christine Sajecki, and Kathy Fahey, as well as an art installation from Graham Coreil-Allen.

Stories from Easter Rabbit have been taught in classrooms and workshops by several instructors including Justin Sirois and Brian Noel, and students from the classes of MICA art instructor Megan Lavelle created video interpretations of Easter Rabbit stories.

The book was featured in many essays, reviews, and interviews including the following:

In: A Brief History of Fables: From Aesop to Flash Fiction by Lee Rourke: "Joseph Young: from microscripts to microfictions"

Joseph Young: Easter Rabbit, by Megan Lavelle

Review, by Mike Young

Review, by Edward Mullany

Review, by Kathy Fish

Interview, with Tania Hershman

Interview, with Meg Pokrass

Radio Interview, with Aaron Henkin on The Signal, which doesn't appear to be archived.

PDF Chapbooks

Over the past 10 years, I have designed a number of pdf chapbooks of my written work, which I have posted to Issuu. These booklets were made to showcase self-contained writing concepts I thought were best served in a chapbook form that could be self distributed on the Internet.

Pictured are the covers to the booklets. Please follow links below to read the booklets:

When You Drip I Drip So

Murder

Flower

The Guides to Ossabaw

Klein

The Death of Ivan Illyich

13 Calves

Falls the Shadow

West

The Paintings of Forrest Bess

Newer Comics

For a bit longer than 2 years, my practice consisted largely of creating digital collages–a project I called Newer Comics–using, quite often, the artworks of artists throughout art history, as well as text I wrote and other markings, images, shapes, and the like. Each Comic comments on some aspect of art, the art world, the specific practice of the artist used in the collage, and in many cases the larger social, cultural, political world we live in.

The complete collection of Newer Comics can be found on my Tumblr (along with a number of other projects). The Comics shown here are a very small sampling of the many I created.

  • All Of Us Too

    Collaged image credit Bob Ross.
  • Do You Think God

    Collaged image credit Franz Marc.
  • Un Boring

    Collaged image credit John Baldessari.
  • Wet

    Collaged image credit Helen Frankenthaler.
  • fly

    Collaged image credit Yoko Ono.
  • Here:

    Collaged image credit Martin Puryear.
  • Fair

    Collaged image credit Gabriele Munter and Wassily Kandinsky.
  • Oh America

    Collaged image credit Tomb of Hafez.
  • bad tales

    Collaged image credit Andy Warhol.
  • Less

    Collaged image credit Isamu Noguchi.

NAME

Six years ago I wrote a vampire novel, NAME, to pay my rent. NAME, about 120 pages, follows a young vampire, Robert, as he wanders his city, feeds nightly, and tries to answer his existential quandaries about being undead. Robert also tries to understand his love interest, the vampire Lena–fiercely independent, intelligent, and far more suited to survival post-death than he–as well as his vampire arch nemesis, the violent, psychotic Daniel (aka the rabbit), a lover of Lena's when they were human.

I wrote NAME in a month, then asked author John Dermot Woods to create the cover illustration and writer Justin Sirois to design the cover. I typeset the novel in InDesign, sent it to the printer, and began marketing. NAME, a project entirely outside of my usual writing practice, might be the most fun I've ever had while writing.

Book Cover and Poster Design

Working in collaboration with the small press publisher Ink Press Productions, I've designed a number of book covers and promotional flyers. Also shown are a book cover made for the student writing of the Village Learning Place afterschool program and a cover for the third annual winner of the Chris Toll Memorial Poetry Prize.

5 drawings of the maryland sky

5 drawings of the maryland sky is a chapbook of unified microfictions released by Ink Press Productions in letterpress form in 2012. When this limited edition sold out, Ink Press released a pdf version, for which I designed the cover and interior pages. Later still, Ink Press released a broadside of the microfictions using the polymer plate used to letterpress the original paper edition.

The Collected Joseph Young

The Collected Joseph Young was a self-curated art show of my work that took up the whole living area of my home. The works shown included pieces in many different formats—including paper art booklets, works on paper and cardboard, works on wood and drywall board, video, and digital collage—made over the past 6 years. I wrote a Program that visitors could use for self-guided tours throughout my home to view the work. The program, attached below, also provides an artist statement and notes on the work. All of the framing and matting for the works were done by me using frames bought at thriftstores in Baltimore. A note on the framing is found in the Program as well.

An artist talk and closing reception occurred a month after the opening where I spoke with Amanda McCormick about the show and the work in it. As always, the work in The Collected Joseph Young blends the visual with the written, and even those pieces that don't include text written by me reference the written through the use of materials like vintage book pages and other found paper sources.

Here is an essay on the show by Adam Robinson.

Small Houses and other text installations

The Small Houses Project is my process of installing microfictions written by me on the walls of homes and businesses in Baltimore and elsewhere. These fictions are written to be site specific, as are their design and arrangement on the walls. The fictions are laid out in InDesign and transferred to the wall by means of photocopy transfer. An interview about the project can be found here.

I have also done a number of other text installations in the forests, galleries, and neighborhoods of Baltimore, Savannah, and elsewhere.

  • Small Houses

    Installation view of They Kept It.
  • Small Houses

    Installation view of They Kept It.
  • Small Houses

    Installation view of Thunder.
  • Small Houses

    Installation view of The Do Live Here.
  • bird

    bird, photocopy transfer on canvas, 14 instances of the word "bird" transferred to canvas and wrapped about tree trunks in Leakin Park, as part of Art in the Park, Baltimore.
  • The Crossing

    The Crossing, photocopy transfer on found wood planks which were assembled and placed beneath a Baltimore Railroad bridge.
  • Tongue Expressors

    Tongue Expressors, photocopy transfer of various phrases on tongue depressors, shown at Current Gallery as part of the CART art show, Baltimore.
  • The Forest Floor

    The Forest Floor, photocopy transfer of site specific phrases on cedar shingles coated with beeswax, installed on the forest floor at Leakin Park as part of Art in the Park whow, Baltimore.
  • Paul Mitchell

    Paul Mitchell, photocopy transfer on 36 found wood panels, as part of Works on Paper and Wood, Savannah, GA, in memorial of Jim Bitler of Ossabaw Island, GA.
  • Stations of the Cross

    Stations of the Cross, photocopy transfer on 14 wood panels.

Connect with Joseph

Joseph's Curated Collection

This artist has not yet created a curated collection.