The Future Library: Why Didn’t I Think Of This?
A Scottish artist named Katie Paterson came up with the best idea ever.
Books, at least the traditional kind, need paper. And did you know paper comes from trees? How ’bout that?
With that in mind, Paterson developed a brilliant project.
A thousand trees have been planted in Nordmarka, a forest just outside Oslo, which will supply paper for a special anthology of books to be printed in one hundred years time. Between now and then, one writer every year will contribute a text, with the writings held in trust, unpublished, until 2114. Tending the forest and ensuring its preservation for the 100-year duration of the artwork finds a conceptual counterpoint in the invitation extended to each writer: to conceive and produce a work in the hopes of finding a receptive reader in an unknown future.
The first writer selected for the project is none other than Margaret Atwood. She’ll take part in a ceremony next year to hand over her manuscript to the trust.
The city of Oslo fully supports the project and are working with the Future Library (the project’s name) to make sure the forest and manuscripts remain protected over the next 100 years.
A tree farm for classic works of literature? Why didn’t I think of this?