Keira Rathbone – Typewriter Artist

Queen Elizabeth II
Queen Elizabeth II

Keira Rathbone is a West London-based fine artist. She grew up in Dorset and studied Fine Art at UWE in Bristol. Over the past ten years Keira has developed a far-reaching reputation for her experiments into typewriter art.

Hammersmith Bridge
Hammersmith Bridge

Keira sees her vintage manual typewriter’s characters purely as marks, stripped of their conventional purpose. She is interested in the collective effects of these marks in her ‘typictions’ as she literally sketches -tapping the marks with varying intensity, whilst directing the paper around the platen to capture her chosen subject.

The Library in the Woods
The Library in the Woods

Keira’s typewriter art technique was born out of a lack of any verbal expression worth recording. A simple desire however, to operate this beautiful old machine and see those unmistakably typewritten marks made Rathbone instantly print and indent freely onto paper. She continued regardless of words and in doing so, inadvertently invented her own visual language.

Marble Arch
Marble Arch

The majority of Keira’s typictions are captured from life, be it a close-up eye or a landmark bridge, pier or other structure and the life surrounding it. The public typing of these subjects turns what she does into a form of performance art, attracting attention from curious passersby of all ages.

Keira Rathbone
Keira Rathbone

Keira has exhibited across the UK and Europe over the years. Highlights include typing side of stage at Glastonbury in 2011; exhibiting alongside Tracy Emin, Damien Hirst and the Chapman Brothers at The Old Vic Tunnels, London; a retrospective show in Selfridges Oxford Street in 2012, a feature on BBC 1’s The One Show in 2012 and most recently appearing on BBC Radio 2’s Jeremy Vine Show in June. However Keira’s ultimate highlights in 2013 have been typing her local Hammersmith and Barnes Bridges and the people she has met whilst doing so.

Keira Rathbone’s Official Website, Facebook.

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