The multi-award winning British novelist David Mitchell, author of Cloud Atlas and Black Swan Green, is to be the second writer to contribute to Scottish artist Katie Paterson‘s Future Library project in Norway.
The public artwork will be created over the next 100 years and will see a thousand trees planted in Nordmarka, a forest just outside Oslo, which will supply paper for a special anthology of books to be printed in 100 years’ time. Between now and then, one writer every year will contribute a text, with the writings held in trust, unpublished, until 2114.
The first manuscript, by internationally renowned Canadian author Margaret Atwood, was handed over this week.
Paterson said: “David Mitchell makes the world a spirited place. His work is transporting and polyphonic, blending time, dreams and reality. I am elated he is Future Library’s 2015 author. His locked-away text will allow future generations to telescope into other worlds.”
Mitchell commented: “The project is a vote of confidence that, despite the catastrophist shadows under which we live, the future will still be a brightish place willing and able to complete an artistic endeavour begun by long-dead people a century ago. Contributing and belonging to a narrative arc longer than your own lifespan is good for your soul.”
All 100 manuscripts will be held in a specially designed room in the new Deichmanske Public Library which opens in 2019 in Bjørvika, Oslo.
Mitchell added: “Imagine if the Future Library had been conceived in 1914, and a hundred authors from all over the world had written a hundred volumes between 1915 and today, unseen until now – what a human highway through time to be a part of.”