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Nomadic residencies that combine art and spiritual practices to unify ideas of healing and creativity.


The residencies consider the close relation between ‘the artist’ and ‘the healer’, and how this important relationship plays a part in dialogues and processes of ‘progress’ and creativity. Opening our intimate experience as individual creators to become shared vessels of creative potential. How art practice and making with our hands can inform and initiate a healing of ourselves the community and further afield. Experiencing and reflecting on the power of collective creation.
Each gathering brings together our 4 lands methods, combining yogic practices of breath work and posture, with movement, sound work, dance and ritual. These energetic practices lead into individual and collective making, ceremony, performative land walks and home making. Through working with these “source gestures” the processes delve into the essence of myth facilitating a deep re-thinking of the stories we tell about home, climate and society. There are 3 residencies each year. We will be updating this page soon with more information about the next gathering of Yörük in winter 2017.

“The stories we have been given for our bodies, climate and society are not equipping us to move creatively and collectively through change. These residencies are a migration of minds and bodies, reforming the stories we have been given to commune within deep shared and evolving wisdom. Reclaiming ourselves as tellers. The vital work of today.”

Summer 2017, Mount of Oaks Portugal
Testimonials on the gathering:

“I am so deeply thankful for everything you made possible and shared in these days! You gave me the tools to own my own spiritual practice. It felt like being part of a circle of precious stones that every day moved a little closer, vibrated and shone a bit more and formed a common necklace towards the end. I am very grateful for your immense generosity to share your tools and processes of creation and inspirations with us without holding back. Your role shifted between mother/teacher and child in a beautiful way. Everyone of us had space to shift and transform, settle or dance in
their own space and space rather than being assigned a fixed role. It feels like the beginning of a journey towards a freedom of spirit and body that has just started. I want more!”

“So much gratitude for the circle and the space you created for such a beautiful, expansive and humbling journey. Rediscovering the ancient and elemental forces of the creative process felt like remembering part of me long lost… feeling like our time birthed a story in me that grows day by day from collective roots. Still feeling the presence of the circle and our dance and voice still gentle sings through my being. Thank you for bring us together and for sharing so much.. would love to join on future journeys!”

“It was such a multi-sensory and multi-layered experience that I am finding it hard to put words around it. Just a few of the sensations – the soft light of the early morning sun, incense, bells, soles on the earth clay floor, hot soil, red paint on feet, the last apricots and luscious figs, our chanting, wild flowers, music, tears, sitting on the sticks and dry leaves of the forest, holding new hands, cool water, red thread, olive oil, fresh herbs, wet felt against wet hands, unfurling paper, speaking, laughing, my baby turning in my belly, tiredness… The whole experience was so suffused with these sensations, an overwhelming richness in every moment. It could be enough just to be still to taste it all. And overlaid on the sensations, a richness of emotional connection, both within and with others. You brought us together as a group so skillfully, so gracefully, so powerfully. I felt a wonderful safety in the holding space you created. I constantly felt in the presence of your generosity – the ceremonies you created for us, the material and objects you brought, the practices you shared with us, the structure you suggested. I can’t think of anything I would not have wanted to experience, in order to create that possible space. I could see the retreat as a seed of something that then continues to grow in exchange with others. Finally, I felt an enormous privilege being among the group as the one’with child’ and also one of the older presences. It helped me to see where I have come in my own journey, and to feel the next steps emerging in front of me. Overall it was a wonderfully rich, grounding and loving time, and I came back carrying a lot of peace and happiness.Thank you.”


At the beginning of summer, yörük make the trek from the dense city plains to summer in the warm breeze and highlands. Arriving with collaborators, bundles, extended methodologies, pots, thoughts, homes and conversations to set up their retreat and settlement to dream a new way.

‘Mount of Oaks’ a permaculture community nestled within the Gardunha Mountains – a beautiful place of convergence, micro climate and refuge. Within the District of Fundao, meaning ‘Deep Place’.

The gathering explored the following themes:
*holistic practice – through body and breath work, relating to the cyclical and sacred processes of the earth and cosmos
*the role of myth and storytelling
*the role of the feminine principal in societal progress
*handheld knowledge – how our ancient knowledge as humans can reveal itself through acts of making
*acts of collective making
*working collectively to discuss and reform ideas
*migration of homemakers to form a collective domesticity
Each day we had 3 meals of organic vegetarian food from the land, including delicious olives and natural spring water. Camping in a simple way in shared bell tents, close to nature. This is very much part of the experience of returning to and becoming ensconced in the land with lovely compost toilets, wood and solar showers.

Timeframes 5th-10th July
5th July – Arrivals and 6pm dinner and Opening evening ceremony.
(Guests are also invited to arrive the evening before)
9th July – Closing shared offering on the full Moon
10th July – Shared breakfast and departures

Flight to Lisbon and from Lisbon take a beautiful train journey to Fundao or Alpedrinha, from where transport to the site will be arranged.
If travelling on the 5th July, flights should arrive in Lisbon by 11:30am giving time to get the 1:30pm train from Oriente to Fundao ( 3 metro stops from the airport).We can advise on routes. This train is 10 Euros single and 16 Euros return if booked in advance.

More details about daily programme, discussions and travel can be found on:
Mount of Oaks permaculture community, location for gathering

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