• Theaster Gates Sanctum Complete


We have embarked upon a 552 hour continuous programme of performance that will breathe new life in the sleeping site of Bristol’s bombed-out Temple Church.

Sanctum is American artist Theaster Gates’ first major public project in the UK. Renowned for his socially-engaged practice, Gates’ artistic methodology is built on the principle of reactivation and collaboration. For the first time in 75 years, a new congregation will gather, within a chamber created from reclaimed materials. Join us to hear the city like never before.

“The work is asking questions about how materials accumulate, how a place accumulates; how time is actually something that is not as linear as we imagine…”

Preparing for Sanctum, Director of Situations, Claire Doherty, caught up with Theaster Gates at the White Cube, Bermondsey. Hear about Gates’ use of the social and the material as ways of understanding the world, the role of art in the public space and his hopes for Sanctum in Bristol.


(Interview duration: 10mins)

Full transcript available here:
Public Art (Now) Theaster Gates talks to Claire Doherty

Public Art (Now) Film Interviews

This interview is the fifth to be released as part of Situations’ Public Art (Now) film series. Produced in association with Spike Island Film and Video and launched in March 2015, the series presents a series of conversations with leading artists and curators on the subject of new forms of public art.

To watch interviews with Amy Franceschini (Futurefarmers), Jochen Gerz, Ahmet Öğüt and Susan Philipsz visit the Public Art (Now) Film Interviews archive page on our website.

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