200 Meters

Pandemic Seoul 2050


The imagined future of 200 Meters, conceived a few months after the COVID-19 pandemic was declared by the World Health Organization, traces an imagined possible future for Seoul after the virus is brought under control. In this future, climate change releases a prehistoric virus from its icy permafrost prison which then spreads across the globe on wind currents from the Arctic Circle. In 2035, this primitive virus combines with radon, a harmful and ubiquitous element currently present in the world’s atmosphere. Radon combines with the virus to form what becomes known as the Anthropo-Neurocaeli Virus (ANV-35). This mutant virus lives up to an altitude of 100 meters and decimates a third of the South Korean population in one month. The massive decrease in population forces the Seoul Metropolitan Government to shrink the city limits to more efficiently accommodate the surviving residents. The large number of cadavers are handled by industrial-scale human underground composting systems. The city quickly separates into sectors that each house a different social class. In 2050, just when life seems to be almost bearable again, an even more lethal genetically engineered mutation of the virus, ANV-50, is released and thrives up to an altitude of 200 meters. Another third of Seoul’s population is wiped out. Encircled by mountains, the capital city becomes uninhabitable except below ground or above 200 meters. The almost desolate city is now in a panic as its remaining residents struggle to survive.

What if the air we breathe was tainted by a fatal virus that only resides in altitudes of up to 200 meters above sea level?

Graphic Narrative


World Builders
  • Thomas Bilder
  • Subi Hahn
  • Bambou Hocepied
  • Cyrielle Naudet
  • 2020

© Annie Pedret 2022