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Future Libraries Commissions


The Festival of Libraries 9th-13th June 2021, was organised by Manchester City of Literature  to celebrate Greater Manchester’s 133 libraries and the role they play in civic life.

Three Squad graduatess – Charlotte Wetton, Ruth Yates and Lydia Hounat – were commissioned to work with digital artists/creative technologists to create work exploring what the libraries of the future might be like, delivered in partnership with FutureEverything.

Ruth Yates worked alongside Chris Ball on a project that coincided with the 50th anniversary of The Turnpike Centre (home to Leigh Library and the Turnpike), and looked at the imagined future of libraries in 50 years time using library users thoughts to populate a digital screen, a projection and printed on fun receipts given out to borrowers. Ruth also write a new poem.

As did Charlotte Wetton who collaborated with David MacFarlane two screens incorporating her work and the movement of passers by. The screens were in the windows of Central Library and we hope that they will be on display again when the Poetry Library at Manchester Metropolitan University opens.

Lydia Hounat was paired with Izzy Bolt – their work explored truth and impartiality in the selection and promotion of library books through interaction with a less than helpful chatbot.

FutureEverything is an innovation lab for digital culture, established in 1995. They host an annual festival, and aim to explore the meeting point of technology, society and culture.

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