Hello brothers and sisters in exhale,
we can be proud not only of our creative activities –
here are a few pictures from before we came and after we left.
A big thank you for all the workers that made this possible !!
On a sunny morning in mid-October, we left the monastery in a colourful caravan packed with the remnants of an estimated 130 people who moved through the gates during three months.
On this morning, the monastery of our dreams was more beautiful than ever. The remaining residents had dedicated their last days to intensive and improvised gardening and cleaning -a deep tissue monastery massage transforming disappointments into manifestations of love for the place.
After serious and inspired negotiations on our side the landlady declared the building unfit for use, with particular reference to the chapel roof. She plans to renovate over the winter, inspiring hope that the monastery can re-open its gates in spring, and continue to provide, in spirit and structure, for the unfolding of our dreams.
Despite the sentimental and nostalgic feeling of leaving the place we learned to love so dearly, we are full of gratitude and wonder of the richness, the process and everything else that emerged and converged over the summer. We began with a month long visioning of community; agreed to two months, extended to three, until finally we did not want to leave any more.
The process showed us how being in alignment with the right intention can create magic. An inspired group of individuals scouted for ground, ploughed the soil and planted the seed. The idea to combine an international center for movement and arts with a permanent community received enormous interest from far and wide, as well as the local region.The big potential for the utilisation of movement in group visioning and decision making processes, and the value of creative self-expression in personal and group processes were only some of the findings of our process.
The project has only just started, and there are many things still to explore. Let us nourish and water it so that it can grow and blossom again and allow us and everybody who has not yet tasted to enjoy its fruits!
Thank you, thank all of you who populated the monastery and its grounds during this time, who filled the courtyard with your laughter, the chapel with your dances, and our hearts with joy. Your singing voices and smiles still resonate in our hearts.
If you would like to share your impressions of this dream, in form of reflections, pictures, drawings… we warmly invite you to do so, under the section « Reflections »
For the next steps, we can look for guidance in the very first principle of CI; allow it to happen! With one hand of STRUCTURE “we make it happen” and with the other hand of FLOW, “we let it happen”.
With the hand of structure, we are looking for alternative sites to host the project for the winter months, and also in the case that the owner chooses a different future for the monastery. Any advice or directions to new monasteries, castles, dreamhouses that could become our new playground are very welcome! Lets all keep our eyes and ears and other senses open…
With the hand on flow, let us hold the vision. « Live into the fairytale » !
And, as the morningbird whispered: “lets keep ripe ripe ripening, until we meet again under the khaki tree!“
The aim of this lab is to bring together an impromptu collaboration (or collaborations) of artists to co-create site specific work in response to the monastery and it surroundings. We’ll work intensively for 5 days and on Sunday 11th share our work as part of the Monastery of Dreams celebration and harvest weekend.
This an open ended experiment and explorations could include performance, video, installation, multi-media etc. The over-all process will be facilitated but it is intended that the week and final work will be shaped very much by the curiosity, interests and creative practice of the participants. The Lab is open to dancers, performers, musicians, improvisers, visual artists, video makers and more!
Monday 5th Oct will be arrival day with a working session in the evening to identify interests and possible collaborations/explorations.
The cost will be 18 Euros per day for food and accommodation – 126 Euros for 7 days. The Lab itself free and participants are welcome to make a donation to the Monastery of Dreams to support the project for next year (Suggested donation 20-40 Euros).
For more information about the Lab or to register interest in participating contact: firstname.lastname@example.org. For more info about the Monastery of Dreams, travel, accommodation or special requirements etc please contact: email@example.com
The need for a core group with a coherent vision is often regarded as vital to starting a community that lasts. I reflect on feedback on our Monastery of Dreams intensive in relation to visits to several formed and developing communities in Catalonia in 2013. We visited Kanawen, Arcadia, Arlequi, Cal Cases, Can Masdeu, Esblada, Irehom, Cala Fou and Molinàs. I also offer a brief history of the group that formed to set up the Monastery of Dreams and the extent of our mutual involvement to provisionally suggest that a lack of strong group vision in our case reflects the trust born in our common practice of CI and an explicit wish to expand our network to encorporate other visions through the residency and intensive process. I conclude with a call for a different idea of visioning that is sensitive to dance, art practice and improvisation.
The Monastery of Dreams is a dance-based community beginning in Catalonia, Spain.
Following a rich process in the intensive week (Aug 1st-9th) at the Monastery – a group of us were inspired to share our discoveries on the dynamics of TRIO and invite you to further research this mystery. Our journey started by challenging the structure of trio which opened a door to wider questions about contact to self, other, and our environment.
How is a trio created? How does it change? What is included in a trio? What is inclusion?
What is included in contact improvisation?
For this event we propose a structure both facilitated and open to spontaneous improvisation.
Over 8 days (Sept. 5th-12th) we will investigate this theme through C.I. and other forms of creative expression.
What is alive in you? We invite you to bring your questions, your experience and inspiration. In order to cover basic costs we ask for 160 euro for food and accommodation. In addition to this we ask for a donation based on your situation that will go towards the work of the organization and other costs to sustain the community and make this project possible.
Register here to participate:
It’s amazing what you can do with a bare room within a few days.
Today we show you the rooms of 2 longterm participants, Julia and Katelyn (Both from CA).
Katelyn is a dancer, filmmaker, drawer, and wolf ambassador from California that lives in Berlin. She came to the Monastery of Dreams (MOD) because she was curious to find new ways of living, go deeper into the body and connect to nature.
Katelyn is contributing her skills in filmmaking to document the process of creating the MOD. She was also leading sessions in “witnessing through drawing” – which will be offered during our “Trio” exploration week from Sept. 5th to 12th.
When we entered the room to watch her latest short movie, we were all stunned.
The bare ugly room had turned into a beautiful home, with a carpet, plants, a mosquito net, a little table and a improvised wardrobe. We admire her for her ability to take rests of curtains and turn them into beautiful decorations. Now she has got not only the most quiet, but probably also most beautiful room of the monastery.
But wait! Here is what Julia from Barcelona (Catalunya) did:
Her ability of taking some clay and drawing beautiful patterns with it on the wall, as well as to use plants and fabrics for decoration are amazing!
Julia speaks 6 languages and is eager to explore processes of community living and creative expression. She has a lot of interests: singing, writing, performance, body expression, object poetry, visual art, non-violent communication and permaculture (PDC 2010 & teacher apprenticeship 2015).
Thank you Katelyn and Julia to open us your doors and inspire us with your ability of turning an ascetic room into an oasis of relaxation.
If you want to donate aquariums, air humidifiers, wall carpets, mosquito nets, flower vases and other decorative and expensive stuff, so we are able to continue our homestories from the MOD, please call us at +34 622540261. Thanks.
At the former Seminary of the Marist Brothers, Outdoor Pursuits Centre (Casa de Colonies Ca n’Oliver) and Festival Location of MAPA.
I spent some time thinking about how to summarise or even give a taste of what happened during the two weeks I spent at the Monastery of Dreams, the first week spent preparing for the second, a intensive process of dancing, sharing, performing while thinking, living and imagining community. I realised it would be impossible. The richness of the experience, the fact that my understanding and appreciation is still forming in my being, and that my experience was emergent out of the inter-experience with so many others (some 30 people shared the intensive experience and some 60 people passed through the monastery doors during the two weeks) means that all I hope to do is share what it means to me now.
The residency is currently ongoing with the sharing of ideas, workshops and various spontaneous sessions and of course the process of daily community building.
Now it’s one week we are at our “Monastery of Dreams” and we want to give you some photos and a little update on what’s going on here.
On July 21st, Angel, Dani, Gabriel, Leon and Melody entered the place to start the preparations. We cleaned rooms and public spaces, exploring the water and electricity system, cleared and set up the kitchen, cleaned the big fridge from years of green mould, pulled out all the weed in the yard, brought useful stuff together from the whole monastery and set up a public seating area inside.
It was very hot, but really good fun. Daniel left us the 23rd, to return the 25th with his partner Queralt and his son Vidal. For a while we were 3 people in a huge monastery – exciting!
Because Leon was crying so much, Angel directed a constellation and we confronted ourselves with the past energies of the monastery as a convent, hospital and kids summer camp – a strong experience.
On July 24th, Gavin arrived. He was carrying 60 kilos and was completely wet because he just went one kilometer through a thunderstorm. But he had a big smile on his face and we felt him like a brother that was coming home after a long time. He helped us to clear the big public yard with amazing patience, always wearing his earphones with a Spanish course and murmuring strange sentences.
In these days we experienced some heavy thunderstorms.
Some of our fruit trees:
On July 25th, the first participants from the residency arrived, Nicolas and Elise. Nicolas came in a cool VW campervan, parking and sleeping under the trees. He took over the role as a kitchen organizer, until Julia would arrive and take over. We developed a box and a list for everybody to contribute for food. Nico went also for shopping for us.
Elise had enough courage to take a room on the other, silent side of the monastery, and facilitated Qi Kung sessions in the morning.
We started to explore the grounds more and more, starting to cut some of the green – embarrassing our poor Angel that loves the wild nature. Bushman Daniel helped to facilitate the first meeting and set up a “Free shop”, where we exchange clothes and offer a lot of free stuff that we found inside the monastery.
In the morning, Josef arrived with his son Thais, to visit Gabriel and Melody for a day. They helped us to drain water and clear the yard from leaves.
We started to cook meals in turns and the table became really big for the first time!
Later in the evening, Mike and Sonja from the core organizer team arrived, with their son Louie.
Sonja set up a public schedule in the yard, and Mike gifted us with a fancy rake and a car.
On the weekend, we also joined a big feast in the little village:
On July 26th, Jenny and Laurence arrived at 2am in the night.
The following day, the group of Daniel Werner and 3 lovely people from Barcelona arrived, and so we had 20 people around the table, for the first time.
We set up the dance space in the theatre on Monday the 27th and everybody was enjoying an evening jam with contact improvisation.
Our intensive week is from August 1st to 9th
The residency with ongoing sessions of participants and creative exchange is open until September 13th.
We still have space, join us!