Artist to retype famous novel on a single sheet of paper

Kingsley Amis’s celebrated novel ‘Lucky Jim’ will be retyped onto a single sheet of paper at the David Wilson Library between 7-14 March by an artist on a mission to retype one hundred classic novels at locations relevant to the authors’ lives.

Tim Youd’s ‘100 Novels’ project sees him rewriting classic texts onto single sheets of paper backed by an additional sheet using the same make and model typewriter used by the author – in the case of Amis, the model is an Adler Universal.

He then 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.

The decision to retype 'Lucky Jim' at Leicester was inspired by Kingsley Amis's visit to see his friend, the poet Philip Larkin, then an assistant librarian at the University. It was this visit that sparked the idea to write ‘Lucky Jim’, Amis's classic comic novel about a young lecturer at a Midlands red brick university.

While in the United Kingdom Tim will also be retyping: Anthony Burgess's A Clockwork Orange on an Olympia SM5 with the International Anthony Burgess Foundation at the Manchester Central Library; Virginia Woolf's To The Lighthouse in St. Ives, Cornwall; and Woolf’s Orlando at Monk's House in Rodmell, Sussex.

Tim is represented by the Los Angeles based gallery Coagula Curatorial.

Tim Youd will be performing in the David Wilson Library foyer by the café between 7-14 March. Students and staff are invited to watch the performance and engage with Tim while he retypes 'Lucky Jim'.