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Past Exhibition

Forest (For a Thousand Years…)

April 7 - July 1, 2018

FOREST (for a thousand years…), the beguiling and uncanny audio installation by renowned Canadian artists Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller, can be experienced April 7- July 1, 2018 in the redwood grove of UC Santa Cruz’s Arboretum and Botanic Garden. This is the West Coast debut of the 28-minute sound installation, originally commissioned for dOCUMENTA 13 in Kassel, Germany. FOREST is presented by the Institute of the Arts and Sciences in collaboration with the UC Santa Cruz Arboretum and Botanic Garden and the San Jose Museum of Art.


UC Santa Cruz Arboretum and Botanic Garden is located on High Street between the main campus entrance and the west entrance.

Hours and Admission

Tuesday- Friday 12 - 5 p.m.
Saturday- Sunday 10 - 5 p.m

PLEASE NOTE: FOREST will close at 4pm June 30, but will be open July 1, Sunday, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Admission to FOREST is included in a visit to the Arboretum and Botanic Garden. Admission is $5.00 ($2.00 for children, free to Friend's Members, volunteers, and UCSC students.)

Students sit on stumps listening to sounds played in a forest.

“A remarkable thing about Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller’s utterly captivating sound installation is how it blurs distinctions between site and art. You enter a clearing in the forest, sit down on a wooden stump, and simply listen. Cardiff and Bures Miller’s work incorporates the actual forest into an audio composition emitted from more than thirty speakers. Sometimes there is a near synchronicity of natural and mediated sounds, and it’s tough to discern what is live and what is recorded…. In turn frightening and deeply touching, ominous and serene, Cardiff and Bures Miller’s forest soundscape is a wonder.

Gregory Volk, Art in America

About the Exhibit

To experience the piece, you follow a path through a densely forested redwood grove. Branches crunch under your feet until you reach a small clearing populated by tree stumps. As you sit down, the sounds of rustling trees, crackling branches, and bird calls subtly intensify. An airplane passes overhead. Someone laughs.

Sit and Listen

It is nearly impossible to determine which sounds are coming from a recording and which sounds are live. When machine guns begin to fire and an explosion detonates, the eeriness of the experience becomes laced with quickly amplifying uneasiness. An indeterminate history merges with the present, filled with both horrors and the sublime, and becomes an audible presence in the shadowy forest.

Sponsorships (Tab to skip section.)
A speaker sits among the trees in a forest.


FOREST (for a thousand years…) at the UC Santa Cruz Arboretum and Botanic Garden has been generously sponsored by the Nion McEvoy Family Trust of the San Francisco Community Foundation, Wanda Kownacki, Rowland and Pat Rebele, and annual donors to the Institute of the Arts and Sciences.

About the Artists

Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller are internationally recognized artists known for their immersive multimedia sound installations and their audio and video walks. Their recent solo exhibitions include: 21st Century Museum, Kanazawa, (2017); ARoS Aarhus Art Museum (2015); Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid (2015); The Menil Collection, Houston, TX (2015). Recent group exhibitions include Being Modern: MoMA in Paris, Fondation Louis Vuitton, Paris (2017); 19th Biennale of Sydney (2014) and dOCUMENTA (13). In 2011, Cardiff and Miller won Germany’s prestigious Kathe Kollowitz Prize. They also represented Canada at the 2001 Venice Biennale, for which they received the Biennale’s Premio Speciale (Special Prize) and the Benesse Prize.​

About the Presenting Institutitions

Institute of the Arts and Sciences

Institute of the Arts and Sciences is an interdisciplinary exhibition and event forum in the Arts Division of the University of California, Santa Cruz. The IAS’s mission is to harness the creative power of the arts and the sciences to explore big questions and critical issues of our time. It contributes to the cultural life of UC Santa Cruz and features the work of nationally renowned artists and groundbreaking scientists and scholars. The IAS offers a range of public programs, sponsors residencies, and curates and organizes an ambitious exhibition program.

Santa Cruz Arboretum and Botanic Garden

The UC Santa Cruz Arboretum is a research and teaching facility committed to plant conservation and serves both the campus and the public. Its rich and diverse collection, containing representatives of more than 300 plant families, provides beginning students with a broad survey of the plant kingdom. Facilities for growing plants offer students and research faculty opportunities to experiment with living plants. The Arboretum maintains collections of rare and threatened plants of unusual scientific interest. 

San Jose Museum of Art

The San Jose Museum of Art celebrates new ideas, stimulates creativity, and inspires connection with every visit. Welcoming and thought provoking, the Museum delights visitors with its surprising and playful perspective on the art and artists of our time. SJMA is a leading showcase in the Bay Area for modern and contemporary art. The Museum has earned a reputation for its fresh, distinctive exhibitions, which are conceived to engage Museum visitors of various ages and cultural backgrounds.  Through its exhibitions and programs, SJMA addresses major trends in international contemporary art, architecture, and design, with an ongoing commitment to also place the work of California artists in national and international context.

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FOREST Credits and Thanks:

FOREST Credits and Thanks:

The Canada Council for the Arts

dOCUMENTA (13), Carolyn Christoff Bakargiev, Christoph Platz

The Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir

d&b audiotechnik, Michael Case, Ralf Zuleeg, Simon Johnston

Nokia Concert Hall, Tallin, Estonia; Aivar Sirelpuu

Ron Elliot

Heather Pawsey

Arvo Pärt

Galerie Barbara Weiss

Luhring Augustine

Speakers by d&b audiotechnik, Germany

Airplane Recordings

John Leonard

Horse Wrangler

David Miller


John Thielman

Tree felling

Jeremy Ayotte


Pacific Blasting, Banah Blasting, Cody Newman

Horses and Wagon

Sean Newton, Robert Kimber, Greta, Meaghan, Caravan Farm Theatre

Sounds, Voices, and Various SFX

Tristan Mackinlay, Rachel Mercer, Jason Chan, Catherine Spencer, Amber Choo, Maggie Shirley, Kevin McCarty, Dayle Mousseau, Kevin Jesuino, Liz Dumontet, Torin McLachlan, Tanja Woloshen, Bee Wolf Ray, Clare Marie Daniela Rutherford Marquez, Peter Cloud Panjoyah, Albini Lapierre, Jeremy Williams, Sir Jason Dyer, Bob Aschmann, Alison Joy Cross, Phillip Carter, Silas Crowe, Trinity Pitt, Karl Ostermann, Scott, Kyle Miller, Chelsea Lovde, Tacita Dean, Mathew Hale, Jeffrey Eugenides


Zev Tiefenbach, Annika Rixen, Alison Joy Cross


Carlo Crovato

Construction (Canada)

Eric Fagervik

Mixing and Editing and Sound Design

Titus Maderlechner

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Nunc dimittis

Composed by Arvo Pärt

Performed by The Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir
Conducted by Heli Jürgenson
Managed by Esper Linnamägi
Recorded at the Nokia Concert Hall, Tallin, Estonia

Toy Piano Composition

Janet Cardiff


George Bures Miller