The event is a laboratory for creative experimentation in an offline, remote setting. Sanctuary creates a space for participatory artworks that range from digital and sound works to radio transmissions, video, performance, experimental labs, and talks.
The Galloway Forest Dark Sky Park is a specially designated area that is low in light pollution. Remote, beautiful and mostly ‘electronically dark’, the park is an opportunity to consider both the environment and the absence of today’s pervasive technology, exploring what is possible by being present in an unconnected place.
Reach is a collaborative digital art platform created for the event. The platform enables the public to respond to specific themes—set by a kind of artist in residence—by uploading imagery, text or audio recordings. The first artist to use Reach was Tim Shaw. Creative responses to the themes of darkness, remoteness and silence culminated in the construction of an offline physical artwork in Galloway Forest Dark Sky Park. The project was part of Sanctuary 2017 and Sanctuary intend for Reach to return in new and exciting ways each year.