AND Festival 2015

18 -20 September 2015, Grizedale Forest  

Thank you for joining us at Grizedale Forest, for AND festival 2015. It featured eight public realm works, over 50 international artists to the site, 20 partners, one unorthodox exhibition and four weekend workshops. There was drones, funghi, virtual reality, outdoor cinemas, kite flying and singing trees… 

Coverage on the festival included print, radio and online in nationals like AN, The Guardian, Wired, Creative Applications and in the local press BBC Cumbria, Metro & The Westmorland Gazette.

See below for a snapshot of what happened:

The festival created a space where audiences could experience the forest anew through inviting world-class artists to create new art works for the historical site. We turned the forest into a laboratory, which became a temporary haven for filmmakers, artists, creative technologists, philosophers and scientists, who explored the secret infrastructure of the forest and natures processes. The programme provided new perspectives on the forest, through the eyes of the plants, animals and machines that inhabited it, allowing visitors an insight into natures technologies as well as emerging trends in digital practice.

Artworks were sited across the sculpture park in both temporal, distributed and sculptural ways. Discovered via trails and treks they looked at everything from the biological resonance in technology to the simulation of nature and the ‘smart forest’.


Virtual reality experience In the Eyes of the Animal from Marshmallow Laser Feast  invited audiences to experience the forest through the journey of three species common to the site (See below). Universal Assembly Unit’s Echo Assembly brought the trees to life at night and Liam Young invited us to a stealth rave, by visualising the landscape through the eyes of the machines that constructed it in Where the City Can’t See 

The festival featured conventional, albeit foliage-heavy, movie screenings, such as Singing Ringing Tree and Moonrise Kingdom for the BFI Love season. Alongside John McTiernans’s cult classic Predator and we programmed a heady mix of world cinema inspired by the forest as a site for cinematic mythology in the film retreat Losing the Plot.

CSFL3922All the workshops sold out including the ‘Night of the Living Deadwood’ which looked at the dynamic processes of fungal-tree relationships with the University of Lancaster; Drone School welcomed over 200 young people to navigate an obstacle course and learn how to fly and Geraldine Pilgrim’s  Live Art Development Agency workshop created a space for artistic responses to the notion of ‘Home’.

The festival launched projects, which will tour the UK and internationally over the next 12 months so if you missed out during the festival there will be more opportunities to encounter the works over the following year.


And the festival exhibition Seeing The Forest Through the Trees remains open til the 6th December so if you haven’t yet made a trip to the magical Grizedale Forest you still have time.


Thank you to our host partner  Forestry Commission England’s Forest Art Works programme.

The festival is hosted by partners The Forestry Commission England’s Forest Art Works. Supported by Arts Council England. Funded with support from the European Commission.

This communication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.


Event info:

  • Fri 18th — Sun 20th Sep 2015

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