urban retreat lab
Choreography meets Dharma
Urban Retreat Lab is a new platform for studying what happens at the intersection of choreography and dharma.
A meeting between artists and meditators.
A laboratory for our perceptions of the world.
Happening in the public and art spaces of the city.
Urban Retreat Lab is a collaboration between Ulrika Wedin and Rachel Fuller
Ulrika Wedin – Choreography
With the Urban Retreat Lab were reflecting on the dharma using our body, movement and choreographic methods. Our body and it’s movement becomes our tool.
We are talking about choreography in its broadest sense, people and things inhabiting space.
To take part you don't need to be a ‘dancer’ or ‘choreographer’, we're borrowing their skills and methods to open up new ways of stepping into the world of dharma.
The spotlight is on the familier movements of ordinary life. They're so easy to miss but make up a fantastic goldmine for us to dig out from.
For professional dancers, choreographers, and artists you can use the URBAN RETREAT as a laboratory to inspire and investigate yourself and your artistic work.
"From the first moment of learning how to meditate I felt the unity of dharma and dance, the unity between sitting still and movement. Ever since that day they've been a parallel trace in my life. Now that trace manifests in URBAN RETREAT LAB such an inspiring and humble luck to collaborate with the fantastic teacher Rachel aka Vajradarshini to continue the journey of exploring and expressing the mysteriousness of life."
Ulrika Wedin is a choreographer, dancer and artist from Sweden, working as a freelance artist with the base in Stockholm. Started to meditate in 1998 and been practicing Buddhism ever since.
Rachel Fuller – Dharma
The teachings of Buddhism are called dharma, and my training is in these teachings. But the word dharma points to universal truths that can’t really ‘belong’ to any religion. They point to what we find when we step behind the curtain and move closer to reality.
Meditation is not just about tools and techniques. Like the artist the meditator develops certain skills. But meditation, like real art, goes beyond mere expertise. We have to cultivate a certain sensibility, a way of opening to experience, and of perceiving the world that is completely new.
The URBAN RETREAT LAB is about retreating in the city. Instead of leaving ordinary life behind in the search for reality, we shine a light on the everyday. We walk our meditation through the streets, we hear the teachings in the sounds of the subway, and find stillness in the ever-moving city.
“For years I’ve led Buddhist retreats in conventional settings, often smuggling in the art; images, music and film. For me, art illuminated the dharma, and the dharma illuminated art. They shone a light on one another. When I met Ulrika for the first time it felt that there was a wordless understanding between us. We call what we do a collaboration, but that implies effort and intention. What happens between us is far simpler than that. What I can put into words, she manifests in form. And together we point to something beyond the words, beyond the form.”
Rachel Fuller has been practicing Buddhism for 30 years and teaching dharma and meditation for over 20 years, she is from England and lives both there and in Stockholm.
urban retreat lab happenings
We hope the laboratory will give rise to various events over the coming months and years. The first big event on the calendar is the Urban Retreat 2018 Stockholm City, see below for details.