New Art Edition of James Joyce’s Ulysses Features All 265,000 Words Written by Hand on Big Wooden Poles

ulysses art book

This week, Stephen Gertz, the edi­tor of Book Tryst, has on dis­play an Incred­i­ble Art Edi­tion of James Joyce’s Ulysses. Here’s how he describes the ambi­tious project:

James Joyce com­plet­ed his nov­el, Ulysses, on Octo­ber 30, 1921. Nine­ty years lat­er, on Octo­ber 30, 2011, Char­lene Matthews, the Los Ange­les-based book artist and book­binder recent­ly the sub­ject of a pro­file in Stu­dios mag­a­zine, began work on an extra­or­di­nary edi­tion of the book, based upon Sylvia Beach’s true first edi­tion with all its typos includ­ed.

Two years lat­er, on Octo­ber 30, 2013, she com­plet­ed it: the entire text of Ulysses — all of its approx­i­mate­ly 265,000 words in eigh­teen episodes — tran­scribed by hand onto thir­ty-eight sev­en-foot tall, two-inch diam­e­ter poles: Ulysses as a land­scape to phys­i­cal­ly move through; the nov­el as lit­er­ary grove, Ulysses as trees of of life with lan­guage as fra­grant, hal­lu­ci­na­to­ry bark, and trunks reach­ing toward the sky.

Head over to Book­tryst to look over a gallery of images and learn more about Matthews’ grand under­tak­ing. And if you’d like a nice intro­duc­tion to Ulysses, please see some of the instruc­tive mate­r­i­al we’ve list­ed below.

Don’t miss any­thing from Open Cul­ture. Sign up for our Dai­ly Email orRSS Feed. And we’ll send qual­i­ty cul­ture your way, every day.

Relat­ed Con­tent:

James Joyce’s Ulysses: Down­load the Free Audio Book

Read Joyce’s Ulysses Line by Line, for the Next 22 Years, with Frank Delaney’s Pod­cast

Hear James Joyce Read a Pas­sage From Ulysses, 1924

The Very First Reviews of James Joyce’s Ulysses: “A Work of High Genius” (1922)

Vir­ginia Woolf Writes About Joyce’s Ulysses, “Nev­er Did Any Book So Bore Me,” and Quits at Page 200

Vladimir Nabokov Cre­ates a Hand-Drawn Map of James Joyce’s Ulysses


by | Permalink | Comments (0) |

Sup­port Open Cul­ture

We’re hop­ing to rely on our loy­al read­ers rather than errat­ic ads. To sup­port Open Cul­ture’s edu­ca­tion­al mis­sion, please con­sid­er mak­ing a dona­tion. We accept Pay­Pal, Ven­mo (@openculture), Patre­on and Cryp­to! Please find all options here. We thank you!

Leave a Reply

Open Culture was founded by Dan Colman.