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The Secret Library of the Future

Date Published: 16/05/2023

The Secret Library of the Future

Scottish Artist Katie Paterson founded The Future Library in 2014 in Norway. The library is part of a 100 year art project designed so that in the year 2114 future generations will have access to books that have waited to be read for over 100 years. These books have been written by world renowned authors , and have been written solely for this project. They have never been published or released to the public and would only be available at the future library.

In order for this project to happen, each year one author is carefully selected by a panel of literacy experts. Once the author finishes their manuscript it is stored in the Silent Room at the Oslo Public Library. Whilst these manuscripts are being stored under lock and key, a forest of 1000 trees are growing in a nearby forest, these trees are planted when a new book is delivered. These trees will be used to create the pages of the 100 published limited edition anthologies.

“When 2114 comes around, the 1,000 trees planted in the forest should yield enough paper to print about 3,000 anthologies of 100 books each, or around 300,000 volumes in total. They will function as a literary time capsule, with the earliest manuscript reflecting a presumably very different society compared to the latest one” (Prisco, 2018).

Since 2014 the following authors have submitted their work to the project;

2014- Margaret Atwood

2015- David Mitchell

2016- Sjon

2017- Elif Shafak

2018-Han Kang

2019- Karl Ove Knausgard

2020- Ocean Vuong

2021- Tsitsi Dangarembga

2022- Judith Schalansky

2023- TBA later this year

Aren’t libraries amazing?

For more information visit


Fisher, R. (2022, July 1). The Norwegian library with unreadable books.

Prisco, J. (2018). Margaret Atwood and other authors have penned novels that won’t publish for 100 years. CNN.


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