Reflections on Objects and Memories
In conversation with Aimee Bender
January 12, 2017
Writer-performer Barry Yourgrau is a clutterbug—perhaps even a hoarder. In his hilarious and poignant memoir Mess: One Man’s Struggle to Clean Up His House and His Act, he unpacks the psychology and culture of hoarding, clutter, and collecting, presenting a compelling look at a mysterious compulsion. Confronted by his exasperated girlfriend, Yourgrau embarked on a wide-ranging project to clean up his chaotic New York apartment and life. Known for his books of magical absurd stories, including Wearing Dad’s Head, Haunted Traveller, and The Sadness of Sex, in whose film version he starred, Yourgrau will join magical realist writer Aimee Bender to ponder the power of objects and memories, and the pain of letting go.