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Welcome to the Sanctuary

We are committed to creative growth through the arts and engendering a spirit of community. This is a grassroots experiment in sharing. Follow the link below to read more about us.

About Us
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Check out the link to the calendar below to see upcoming shows, workshops and events happening at the Sanctuary.

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Sewing Night

Come the second Sunday of the month from 6pm to 9pm for sewing & mending night.

Suggested donation of $5 - $20

Call Debbie with questions

See you there!

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Open Lab

Our open lab hours are

12 pm to 6:00 pm.

See the link below for more information.

Open Lab Brochure

Upcoming Events at the Sanctuary

CALL FOR ENTRY: Exhibition Proposals 2019

The Sanctuary presents an opportunity for artists of all types to share their work with the Northern California community. Located in downtown Arcata, the Sanctuary is a community arts center and non-profit organization based in an historic building constructed in 1916 to be the Arcata Women's Clubhouse. Today, it is a bustling community center, music venue, art gallery, and artists' workshop, with facilities including printmaking, ceramics, textiles, woodworking, music recording, bicycle repair, gardening, homesteading, and more.

The goal of the gallery is to precipitate creativity, nourish the minds of Sanctuary visitors, and enhance the Sanctuary’s atmosphere while complementing the many uses of the space. It is our hope that folks will draw on the mission statement: The Sanctuary is dedicated to creative growth through artful living. We encourage people to teach, inspire and know each other.

Submissions may include original art in any media, art collections, curiosities, and more.

The Details

A series of five art exhibitions periods are available in 2019, every two months from February through November; February/March, April/May, June/July, August/September, and October/November. Each session will be either one single exhibit on display in both the Great Hall and the Meeting Room, or two separate but complementary exhibits in each room.

All exhibitors must agree to the terms of the Gallery Contract.

How to Apply

Interested applicants should write a letter explaining their proposal and include:

Submissions can be sent via email to, or sent via mail to:

1301 J Street
Arcata, CA, 95521

Applications will be accepted until 11:59pm on August 31st. Applicants will hear back from Sanctuary staff no later than September 15th.

Sanctuary 2018 Community Supported Art (CSA)

Artists are like farmers. Given time, space, resources, and a hospitable climate, they will produce things that bring health and happiness to others. This year, artists at the Sanctuary are joining forces to produce small works and personal letters. Now you can cultivate a connection between artists and audience by becoming a member of the Sanctuary’s 2018 season of Community Supported Art.

Each month, members will receive a piece of art made at the Sanctuary and an insightful letter by the artist. The letter will invite you into the collective conversation between the artists, and tell the story of each artwork. In the spring, there will be three months of CSA, from March to May, featuring the artists Katie Belknap, Violet Crabtree, and Carissa Lillian Clark. In the fall, the CSA will run from September through November, featuring artists Daniel Nickerson, Rory Cullifer, and Natalie Williams. This project will culminate in an art exhibition at the Sanctuary in December 2018.

Local shares are $140 for the full (six-month) CSA share or $75 for the half (three-month) share. Half share members can choose between our Spring or Fall CSA. Each month’s share will be available for local pick-up on the second Friday of the month, from 6 - 9 p.m. during our Arts! Arcata openings, or on Saturdays during Open Lab from 12 - 6 p.m. The Sanctuary is located at 1301 J Street, Arcata. If you would like it delivered to you, or a loved one’s door, we have a mail-order option, which will be sent out on the second Friday of each month. Mail-order shares are $190 for the full (six-month) CSA share or $100 for the half (three-month) share.

Click here for the CSA subscription form

Please email, or print-and-send this form to us after filling it out.

CSA Share Options

If you participated in our 2017 Summer CSA, and are returning as a member, we would like to thank you with a complimentary silkscreen! Let us know on your subscription form.

This year's participating artists have a variety of artistic backgrounds, but share the Sanctuary as their primary studio space, and work as part of the volunteer staff that keeps the Sanctuary ship afloat.

Carissa Lillian Clark is a visual artist who loves to work with found objects. Wood, metal, and ceramic sculpture and paper collage are her favorite mediums, though she is becoming increasingly enchanted with painting and poetry. Her work often blooms from her curiosity about people and the world. She delights in the meeting point between industrial and natural materials.

Katie Belknap is an artist who works with found items and materials. They may be bits of blue beach findings, wool felt, watercolors, linoleum for printmaking, 1930’s Sear’s catalogs, or songs. The goal is to bring each item into its highest purpose before its inevitable end. Her linocuts are often hand-painted with watercolor; her collages and pen and inks take on musical and nautical themes.

Violet Crabtree is a cartoonist, storyteller, crafter and filmmaker. All of her work has a whimsical flavor, inspired by science fiction, fantasy, history and the forests and ocean of our area. She sews using recycled materials cut into animals and creatures of the imagination. Her stop-motion animated and live action films are all based on her comic book stories that she draws and performs with her group The ComiX Trip. She also animates music videos for local bands. More info at:

Daniel Nickerson is a musician, artist, and writer whose work often finds its final home in the form of books, posters, CDs, and tapes which are reproduced in small editions and circulated among friends. Illustrations, words, and recordings mix together to tell stories and inspire creativity in others.

Rory Cullifer is a craftsman of many sorts whose long-time passion has been ceramics. Each individual piece shows his love of lore, built to fill the heart––a visual metaphor for easing the mind.

Natalie Williams is a visual artist who fulfills her creativity in working with community members as an art teacher and facilitator, and in the ceramics, painting, and printmaking studios of the Sanctuary and beyond. Her work is inspired by children, "children's" stories, dreams, weather, clouds, seasons, animals, poetry, music, mountains, and the sea.

Art Facilities - Open to the Public

        In an attempt to make artistry more accessible to the general public, the Sanctuary provides essential resources that would not otherwise be available to artists and makers with limited space, tools, or knowledge. Three days a week the public is invited for Open Lab hours in our studio and workshop spaces, where they explore and create with the guidance of knowledgeable technicians. These spaces not only inspire art-making but also the restoration, recycling and repurposing of old materials, modeling a lifestyle of waste-diversion and prevention.

Our open lab hours on:

12 to 6 pm


click for past event info >>

© Creative Sanctuary • 1301 J Street Arcata, CA 95521 • 707-822-0898 • Closed Thursdays
the Sanctuary is dedicated to creative growth through artful living. We encourage people to teach, inspire and know each other.