The Abandoned Library

Creative Work
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Record Status: 
Description (in English): 

In a future Northern England devastated by climate change, CJ, a young poet, is working to salvage valuable resources from the flooded remains of a once-thriving coastal town. The world she inhabits leaves her feeling angry and displaced. She is living through the catastrophic consequences of previous generations’ mistakes.

Taking shelter from an approaching storm, CJ ventures inside an old library, where she discovers a bizarre ‘living’ fusion of nature, language and technology. At its heart is The Librarian, a malfunctioned AI that has spent the last few decades years gathering data from its turbulent surroundings. Affected by years of extreme temperatures and abnormal weather conditions, The Librarian is forming its own unique work of literature: a story of connectedness and hope that needs a strong and resilient protagonist.

Created by Andy Campbell and Judi Alston with funding and support from XR Stories, The Abandoned Library is a short VR experience and immersive digital art installation that premiered at The Art House Gallery in Wakefield and The British Library's MIX Conference in 2023. It was also showcased at the Beyond Conference in London in 2023.

A multi-layered work featuring spoken word poetry performed by Toria Garbutt, archive film from the Yorkshire and North East Film Archive, an entity called The Librarian (Dr Guddi Singh) and advanced realtime 3D weather and water simulations, The Abandoned Library won the Game Republic Award for Most Innovative Use of Technology in 2023 and has appeared at numerous international festivals.

Technical notes: 

Available as a PC VR experience and 360 film.

Screen shots: 
The Abandoned Library Poster
The Abandoned Library Poster
The Abandoned Library Poster

The Abandoned Library Teaser

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Record posted by: 
Andy Campbell