Columbia College Chicago

Jack Kerouac: On the road & 66 International Book Covers from the Collection of Horst Spandler

Jack Kerouac’s iconic manuscript scroll of On the Road is the centerpiece of a college-wide initiative investigating the disparate group of poets, artists, filmmakers and musicians known as the Beat Generation. Considered by many as the founding text of the Beat Generation, On the Road was produced by Kerouac in a three-week writing marathon in April 1951. The manuscript is a continuous scroll of translucent paper, 120 feet long, that Kerouac created to feed through his typewriter without interruption. This exhibition offers visitors the rare opportunity to see the original draft, complete with Kerouac’s own edits in pencil. This manuscript is on loan from the collection of James S. Irsay.

Kerouac's global reputation is evidenced in the numerous foreign editions of his books—many of which are still in print. Complementing the exhibition of the scroll, the Center presents On the Road Around the World: 66 International Book Covers from the Collection of Horst Spandler. The covers are a feast for the eyes, evincing a wide-array of graphic styles and interpretations that range from the beautifully evocative to conspicuous caricature.

October 3–November 26, 2008
Opening Reception, October 3, 2008 
5:30 pm–8:00 pm