The Spirit of Utopia @ The Whitechapel Gallery

The third iteration of Sanatorium, opened on July 4th at the Whitechapel Gallery in London, as part of the exhibition The Spirit of Utopia, curated by Kirsty Ogg.
Ten artists and collectives from around the world speculate on alternative futures for the economy, the environment and society itself, asking, ‘what if?’

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Photo Courtesy of Gabriel Stux


During the 100 day exhibition, SANATORIUM, located at Baroque Karlsaue Park, will be featured among 100’s of artists at this years dOCUMENTA(13).


Report on the Sanatorium from tagr.TV



What is the SANATORIUM?

The Sanatorium is a transient clinic that provides short unexpected treatments that mix art and psychology. In order to experience this project you have to sign up as a patient and participate in sessions which may be individual or in groups. The receptionist will ask you some questions. Please feel free to tell them if there is any particular situation in this present time that you would like to address, and we will try to assign a therapy according to your needs.


Where do these therapies come from?

Each therapy has a documented genealogy. They are mixtures and variations of existing techniques such as Gestalt psychology, theater warm-up exercises, fluxus events, conflict resolution techniques, shamanism, corporate coaching, yoga, psychodrama, hypnosis, etc.


How can therapy help me?

There are several ways therapy can help you. Perhaps you have an important decision to make, a past trauma to overcome, future plans to make, you may be looking for clarity, or to release anger, or reconcile with someone, etc. If nothing else, we expect you to have an interesting time.


What if I don’t have a problem?

Our approach to therapy is not necessarily problem-centered. Therapies can also be an extensional device1 to enhance your present state. These activities may help you to find something akin to the sweet spot2 on a bat or racket, the point at which it makes most effective contact with the ball.


Will I see any significant change?

These therapies have a humble goal; they may be a mild remedy to mild afflictions, similar to a psychological first-aid kit. In the Sanatorium the raw material is your own personal narrative. You will play a part in a session with a therapist and possibly random strangers. In general, the Sanatorium is a happy place that has a plethora of insights. Not only may you make meaningful discoveries about your own life, but you can help others. Something you say may bring unexpected awareness to another person.


How is a therapy session structured?

Each therapy has a performative aspect similar to a ritual: there is an introduction, a development, and a closure. It should last less than half an hour in total.


Are there spiritual, religious, or shamanic elements in the Sanatorium?

Some therapies make reference to spiritual, religious, or shamanic sources. Throughout history meditation and rituals have served to modify our psychodynamics and reconcile interpersonal space. However, these benefits remain out of reach for those who don’t subscribe to these particular belief systems or cultural frameworks. The Sanatorium is interested in finding the essence of a ritual so that it can function outside its anthropological specificity. The idea is to strip the procedure of its aura and make it accessible in a secular environment.


Who can be a therapist?

We often think that the process of a therapy or ritual may only be effective if carried out by a “legitimate” agent such as a priest, a shaman, an artist, a scientist, etc. The Sanatorium’s aim is not to replace existing systems, but to introduce a new space for encounter where ordinary people can meet one-on-one, a horizontal association run by volunteers and temporary workers. We create, test and improve therapies so they can be safely conducted by someone without credentials. By means of de-professionalization of therapy, the sessions may escorted by

grounds, incomes and belief systems. The Sanatorium’s goal is not only to offer relief, but also to create a space where people can also help and be useful to others. Helping has a therapeutic effect in itself.


Is this real therapy or is it quackery?

The Sanatorium was conceived as a delivery system of placebos, therapies that put into action self-suggestion mechanisms. In this sense, it is similar to quackery but with a fundamental difference: in quackery the patient is led to believe a lie, while in the Sanatorium you are told upfront that this is not real, and it is up to you to believe. In practice, when you enter the Sanatorium you sign a paper acknowledging that this is not a real hospital, and these are not real therapists. Paradoxically, the mind loves cognitive dissonance, that is to say, being aware that you are telling yourself a lie won’t necessarily prevent you from believing in it. The hypnotic adoption of an idea that one has created for oneself can be an effective way to initiate behavioral change.


How many therapies exist in the Sanatorium? 

Up to date there have been 16 therapies that have been tested. In dOCUMENTA (13) Sanatorium is featuring 8 basic therapies and more therapies will be developed in collaboration with the participants from HEAD (Haute école d’art de et design Genève) over its 100 days of operation.


What is Sociatry?

Therapy as we know it today is a luxury beyond reach for most of society, and in response for our present psychological afflictions there has been an excessive reliance on antidepressants and other prescription drugs. Today, some of our biggest health challenges are iatrogenic, meaning that these very challenges stem from a previous therapy prescribed by a physician. In the U.S. the number of prescription drug-related deaths rose from 6,000 in 1990 to 27,658 in 2007. Each year at least 106,000 people die from the drugs they’re prescribed and administered, while illegal drugs result in around 10% as many deaths.


As things stand, prescription drugs are legal and consumption is culturally accepted. Obviously, these drugs are in many cases truly necessary and there would be much suffering without them. That said, studies show that cases of unnecessary prescriptions outnumber the necessary, resulting in an ever-larger number of addicts, much for the profit of big pharmaceutical labs.


Sociatry is a term to describe the science and art of healing society. This notion was first articulated by Jacob Levi Moreno in 1930. At that time it gained currency and then around 1950 fell into oblivion. Today, especially in cities, there is a vast population of unattended victims of depression, loneliness, neurosis, family violence, suicide, and other pathologies. Social Psychology has instruments of diagnosis, but it falls short in the creation of cost-effective methods that can be implemented to the world’s ever-increasing population.


Working structures similar to the Sanatorium could be a means to regaining agency within the original intentions of Sociatry.


Will there be more Sanatoriums?

Looking for alternative methods other than drugs to restore sanity in society, the Sanatorium thinks of itself as a prototype that could evolve into a “Social Franchise”, which beyond the pure drive for profit could result in large-scale social good.

As accessibility is crucial, the Sanatorium hopes to depart from the sphere of art into the wider arena of culture, almost as a roadside attraction and deemed entertainment for families, friends, school groups, etc.


Click on map for larger view.


The Philosophical Casino Book of Questions



Am I doing this correctly?

Am I going to find the way to a fulfilled, satisfied, productive, happy life?

Am I making the right choice?

Am I my name?

Am I on the right career path?

Am I on the right path?

Am I really insatiable?

Am I really still in love with M?

Am I utilizing my talents to the fullest?

Are a cat’s nine lives merely it’s visible projections into our 3-D universe?

Are gay people born homosexual?

Are love and loss inseparable?

Are things going to easy for me?

Are we meant to stay in New York for more than two years?

Are you satisfied with the way your democratic ideas are in movement today?

Cake or Death?

Can a circle be squared?

Can I break through my self-imposed barriers?

Can I live without my parents?

Can I trust future generations?

Can one’s search for knowledge shift between planes of existence and still

maintain a semblance of some grounding?

Can the environment recover?

Can there be any mistakes if something good turns out of a mistake? How does

it effect my thinking, my reactions?

Can we change our fate?

Can wise discussion be made through a dice?

Can you find yourself in a place you’ve never been?

How will the EU/UK be beneficial to my career?

Define humanity

Did I make the right decision today? Is there a “right” decision?

Do dreams lead us to believe in God?

Do I have a duty to try and persuade others to stop doing what I believe is


Do I have a soul?

Do I just escape from myself or do I move constantly out of dissatisfaction?

Do I need a home?

Do soulmates really exist?

Do we make our own choices or are our paths predefined?

Do you have a soul?

Do you like me?

Do you love Danzig too?

Does being a grandfather mean you are old?

Does belief in humanity and the agency it possesses as connected to some form

of rational choice imbue it with a sort of priori telos?

Does God exist?

Does God exist?

Does he like me? Like like like or just like?

Does John like me?

Does life get better as you age?

Does one have to pursue the best version of the self to be happy?

Does the girl that I’m seeing actually like me or is she using me?

Does the guy of my life live in NYC?

How can I accept that which is beyond my control and has great power over my


How can I afford to live freely?

How can I be a better daughter?

How can I be a good influence and supportive in my family?

How can I be a good parent?

How can I be happy?

How can I be more kind to my roommate?

How can I be the most famous artist?

How can I become better?

How can I experience more joy?

How can I free myself from envy?

How can I get ____ to spend their life with me?

How can I get more in-tune with my subconscious?

How can I have more energy?

How can I improve my business?

How can I know when it’s right?

How can I learn to let go?

How can I learn to let go?

How can I make a better use of my time?

How can I make more money (and not be miserable while doing it?)

How can I make the most out of next year?

How can I overcome the obstacles that prevent me from creating and publishing


How can I prevent myself from repeating old habits and negative behaviors?

How can I stop desiring something I don’t need?

How can one make the best use of time, make longer or fill it better?

How can one remain calm?

How can people stop wanting to accumulate things?

How can we receive insight?

How can you accept getting older?

How can you accept that one day you will die if you know there is nothing to

come afterwards?

How can you do what you love when you fear you won’t be good at it?

How could the infinite exist within us?

How deep is the river?

How did tigers get to be so awesome?

How do I access my artistic side more easily?

How do I be more happy?

How do I be supportive and good influence in my family?

How do I become more confident?

How do I become more efficient at work?

How do I begin?

How do I create meaning & purpose and happiness – – in this world?

How do I cure my brain tumors?

How do I find love?

How do I get over being insecure about my job?

How do I get over loss?

How do I incorporate the different aspects of myself – or more specifically how

I see myself , when representing myself in dealing with others – in career and

interpersonal relationships?

How do I keep from boring myself?

How do I know if I’ve made the right choices?

How do I know when it’s time to move on from my job?

How do I know when words stop the meaning of a Q?

How do I learn to put others first?

How do I make my life meaningful?

How do I move forward?

How do I move on from feeling guilty?

How do I stop slicing my driver?

How do I stop turninating about stupid shit?

How do I work better and happier with my co-workers?

How do leave my job?

How do you describe “blue” to a blind man?

How do you know?

How do you synchronize a tr-707, tr727 and a MC-202?

How do you trust?

How does a person stop playing out alternative versions of his/her life in his/her


How does an individual balance ambition with being satisfied with their current


How does one achieve inner peace?

How does one find inner quiet/peace?

How does one live a meaningful life in a world of absurdity?

How does one maintain faith as an atheist?

How does your heart know when it is safe to love?

How important is the accumulation of money for oneself?

How is the best way to live our lives?

How late is Starbucks open?

How linked are one’s understanding and experience of sociability and


How long does sadness remain?

How long should one sustain their idealism?

How long should you wait for someone?

How long will I hang onto my apartment?

How long will I live in NY?

How much should I think about the people in my life when deciding where to


How should I approach planning my career?

How should I approach planning my career?

How should I proceed?

How should I read the guidance I receive?

How should I spend my upcoming year of free time?

How to help my children achieve their “dreams”?

How to live for myself?

How will I know if I have made the right choices (career, love)?

How will I make more money in the face of a growing global economic


How will I realize success?

How will my life and love change the lives of others?

How would moving effect my family?

How should I overcome my shyness?

I get the whole Panthion goals thing – but why did you all think you needed it?

I’ve reached a fork in the road and need to choose a path, which way should I


If E=MC2 , what is E if C approaches zero?

If I get a dog will I never marry?

If I were to leave my life-as-is tonight, would my life-as-could-be make me


If sex is not a sin in God’s eye, why do religious people put such an emphasis

on it?

If so much of what we “know” is generated by the dynamics of the organs of the

body, what part of consciousness can endure after death? Must it have a memory

of the body?

If the dialectical struggle that results in the negation of the terms of existence

were to ever fulfill resolve itself, what comes next?

If will go back living in Europe?

If your heart is pure and good, will good things naturally come to you, or do you

have to still search out what is good for you?

In order to find love, is it more important to be vulnerable or to be true to your

own needs?

Invest in photo equipment?

Is a minimal lifestyle sustainable for me?

Is David dating that Ho?

Is dreaming (of future hopes) a luxury?

Is Eyeheart going to be am interesting experience?

Is god cheesy?

Is happiness the most important thing?

Is ignorance bliss or cowardice?

Is it better to live in the city or country?

Is it better to stir the pot and plan or just wait and see what rises?

Is it better to underuse or overuse something?

Is it easier to be alone in a crowd or an empty space?

Is it healthy to remind yourself of traumatic experiences from the past?

Is it important to live?

Is it more important to seek happiness and fulfillment within ones own lifetime

or to have a lasting and meaningful impact on mankind’s history?

Is it more powerful to do an action for itself, for it’s value as an action in it’s

own right, or is it more powerful to do an action successfully, as a means

towards an end that is demonstrably good?

Is it not a good choice to focus on making art as opposed to other more practical


Is it ok to be driven by hate?

Is it ok to dislike religious people?

is it possible to be faithful to your partner always?

Is it possible to truly understand another person?

Is it time for big change?

Is language meaningful in any way? Can it express a universal truth?

Is leaving New York having kids and living in the suburbs going to make me


Is love important?

Is moving back the right decision?

Is my relationship that was ended because of distance now on an inevitable spiral downward to a meaningless life.

Is my search to find life’s path going to lead me further from my current self or


Is perfect love possible?

Is personal vanity a good thing or bad? In other words, is narcissm necessary for


Is spending money on an MSW education a reasonable reason for a lifetime of


Is straight or curly hair more attractive?

Is suicide a human right?

Is the guy I’m going on a date with Tues going to be “the one”?

Is the universe only perception?

Is there a balance between art and protagonism?

Is there actually a God and does he watch over us?

Is there life after death?

Is there life on other planets?

Is there such a thing as a true monogamous relationship?

Is there such a thing as life without drama?

Is there such a thing as mans “true nature” or soul? Or do we accumulate our nature as we age?

Is there such a thing as truth?

Is there such a thing as unselfish love?

Is there such a thing truth?

Is this it?

It is a bit sour but I believe our friendship will survive this

J + L =?


Now that I’m turning 47 what shall I do with my life?

Petranch rules and I’m happy he got a lot of you thinkers started, but why did it

all end up having to be about God?

Queens, Brooklyn or Manhattan?

Romantically, or in choosing a life partner, how do I focus on who would be the

best match?

Shall I marry my girlfriend?

Should I adopt a child in this lifetime?

Should I adopt Jeff?

Should I be single or not and why?

Should I be writing rather than working full-time?

Should I change jobs?

Should I change my job?

Should I do what he’s asking me to do?

Should I eat dinner and if so what should I get?

Should I incorporate more fruit and vegetables in my diet? If so, what fruit

and/or vegetables should I choose?

Should I get a pet?

Should I go back to music?

Should I go to film school?

Should I go to work tomorrow?

Should I got to Switzerland next month?

Should I have a change in career?

Should I invite my girlfriend to visit my family in another state even though the

relationship is fairly new?

Should I kick one of my bridesmaid out of the wedding party?

Should I listen more to the dead or to the living?

Should I make completing certification a priority?

Should I move here in the fall?

Should I move to California?

Should I procreate?

Should I quit my job to go back to school?

Should I quit my job?

Should I re-locate in the next year?

Should I send letter?

Should I start doing yoga?

Should I stay with a caring but emotionally detached person – will I be happy


Should I stick to architecture?

Should I stop sleeping with F?

Should I take care of peanut?

Should I take the job at EH?

Should I try to stay with M+R?

Should I work harder or just relax?

Should I WWOOF or should I focus on NYC?

Should love be the ultimate goal?

Should we stay on this NYC track or change lanes?

Should I go to PPSC?

So what’s next And perhaps more tell me something I don’t know

Will I feel satisfied with my adventure in Japan?

What should I do the year after next?

What am I looking for?

What am I meant to do in life?

What am I supposed to do now?

What am I?

What can I do to achieve my personal goals in an effective/non-aggressive yet

not to stressful direction?

What combination of love and career will make me happy?

What do I do in August?

What do I need to know now?

What do I need to know now?

What do I need to work on?

What does it mean to be a good mother?

What does it mean to be a good person?

What does it mean to be an individual?

What does it mean to be happy?

What does it mean to come from a place?

What does it mean to know oneself?

What does it mean to say children are innocent?

What good come out of the bad situation I’m currently in? (the Germans)

What happened to my blue dress?

What happens next?

What happens when we die?

What is “success” in life?

What is beauty?

What is beauty?

What is freedom?

What is good?

What is happiness?

What is happiness?

What is home?

What is libido?

What is love?

What is love?

What is more important family or career?

What is my best use?

What is my biggest personal challenge?

What is my identity?

What is my lucky number?

What is my purpose in this world?

What is my real passion?

What is reality?

What is romanticism?

What is the best borough and why?

What is the best path I should take after finish my masters program?

What is the best use of my time and energy?

What is the best use of my time/life?

What is the best way to take advantage of the summer?

What is the deal with dreams?

What is the goal of an ethical life?

What is the key to finding the right path?

What is the key to happiness?

What is the key to maintaining perspective?

What is the meaning if all this?

What is the meaning of life?

What is the meaning of life?

What is the meaning of life?

What is the meaning of life?

What is the meaning to my life?

What is the most enlightened human activity that I can participate in?

What is the most important question we ask?

What is the new black?

What is the next step?

What is the origin of war?

What is the real meaning of “soulmate”?

What is the right date?

What is the right type of work for me?

What is the role of personality in art?

What is the source of music?

What is time?

What is true love?

What is wisdom and is it desirable?

What job will I get?

What kind of cheese will I like?

What kind of mother will  be?

What kind of job will I get?

What makes a person interested in attending an installation like this?

What matters to me more than anything?

What motivates us?

What of the next 10 years?

What religion is the best, most useful religion?

What should I do with my career?

What should be my moral compass?

What should I be when I grow up?

What should I do as a profession?

What should I do regarding my professional life?

What should I do right…now?

What should I do with my life?

What should I do with the rest of my life?

What should my next move be?

What sort of relationship will I have with my mother?

What vocation should I embark on next?

What will my next job be? And will it be significant in the world?

What will be my legacy? What will the world remember me for?

What will happen when my dad dies?

What will I eat for dinner?

What will I get from New York?

What will it take for me to finish my project – in a way that I am totally satisfied

with it?

What will it take to figure things (life) out?

What will lead me to satisfaction (and away from restlessness) in my life?

What will my love life/family life be like in 5 years?

What will the future be of the monetary world: global economy?

What work should I do?

What would going back to Buenos Aires imply?

What would make me most content?

What’s a way to be happy?

What’s best for my dog?

What’s love got to do, got to do with it?

What’s my dharma?

What’s my problem?

What’s the next step?

What’s the best kind of dog?

Why are languages different?

When am I going to return to Europe?

When faced with a conflict between two options, how does one decide on the

best choice?

When I die will it just be “lights out”?

When is the right time to make a commitment?

When should I quit my day job?

When should women serve as soldiers?

When we think do we create our thoughts?

When will humans be replaced by something smarter, stronger and better


When will I die?

When will I marry?

When will I travel again?

When will Jenn stop lecturing me?

When will my healing process be over?

When will the economy improve?

When will the world end?

When will the world end?

Where am I going?

Where can I find a job?

Where do I want to go tomorrow?

Where is God?

Where might I be happiest?

Where should I live before I get old then die or where should I call home?

Where should I live?

Where should I live?

Where should I move?

Where should I travel next?

Where will I be in five years?

Where will I be in five years?

Where will I be in my career in the next 5 to 10 years?

Where will my home be?

Where will things go with S.S?

Where will things go with us?

Who am I?

Who will I build life with?

Who will win the next presidential election?

Why am I here at this exhibit?

Why am I here?

Why are all my favorite authors Jewish and write heavily on Jewish themes?

Why are all of my friends suddenly getting cats?

Why are humans so destructive to each other and to this planet, our home?

Why are relationships so hard?

Why are some people successful after working hard but other people fail after

working hard?

Why bother?

Why can I travel through space but not time? Why is time so much more part of

my mind?

Why can’t cats talk?

Why can’t I say what I’m thinking?

Why can’t we all just get along?

Why can’t we always be happy?

Why did I not get married?

Why did we invent God?

Why do bad things happen to good people?

Why do good things happen to bad people?

Why do I have so much trouble making decisions?

Why do I like food that’s unhealthy for me?



Why do I procrastinate?

Why do New Yorkers always look angry?

Why do only humans have consciousness?

Why do people believe in God?

Why do people suffer?

Why do we exist?

Why do we exist?

Why do work in jobs we don’t love?

Why does anyone care about Weiner’s Weiner?

Why does every question we can pose always, in the end, bring us back to the

question of writing?

Why does it seem that no-one is ever happy?

Why does progress, as the world continues, make for a worse world to live in?

But maybe the grass is greener on the other side.

Why does the @ sign look so silly?

Why is he worth as a friend?

Why is it so hard to maintain a singular focus in my life?

Why is it hard for me to do art that could be sold?

Why is it so hard for me to find a life partner (a loved one, one that loves me)?

Why is it so hard to trust?

Why is Mexican food so good?

Why is there evil in the world?


Will a person be happier making sure they’re financially comfortable rather

than following whims?

Will any work?

Will art always be relevant?

Will he ever understand me fully?

Will he find the love of his life?

Will I be “complete” at some point in my life?

Will I be a teacher for the rest of my career?

Will I be able to get back to my career in music/theatre?

Will I be able to take a vacation next year?

Will I be engaged within the next two years?

Will I be happy with my new life and surroundings after my move to sunset park?

Will I be reunited with loved ones in the after-life.  Is there life after this one?

Will I be satisfied when I get old if I stop having sex?

Will I be successful in completing the transition I believe I’m currently making

and will it be soon?

Will I become Tamors?

Will I come to except what I cannot change?

Will I die a peaceful death?

Will I die young?

Will I ever find long-lasting sustainable happiness?

Will I ever get married?

Will I ever have another dog?

Will I ever just be satisfied or will I always continue to chase something


Will I ever lose my anxiety?

Will I ever make a script I’ve wrote into a movie?

Will I ever make out with Brett?

Will I EVER run my own company?

Will I ever witness a birth or death?

Will I find a job I am happy with in the next 2 months?

Will I find a job that I’m happy with?

Will I find fulfillment in my new career?

Will I find my soul-mate?

Will I find my soul-mate?

Will I find myself in the midst of my family?

Will I find satisfaction in my work ever?

Will I find unconditional love in my next city?

Will I get in to graduate school?

Will I get so sucked into a certain path by my new job that I won’t be able to

break into other areas of interest?

Will I go to Lebanon?

Will I have a family in 10 years?

Will I have the privilege to age with grace an equanimity I desire?

Will I hook up with Sylvia?

Will I keep traveling throughout my life?

Will I know for certain when I’ve reached the happiest time of my life?

Will I like Colorado?

Will I like my new job?

Will I live to be 100?

Will I manage to fix my job?

Will I marry C.K?

Will I marry my boyfriend?

Will I move to a city like New York?

Will I pass my French class?

Will I regret never having kids?

Will I stay in NYC often this year?

Will I stay in touch with my family?

Will I triumph in solving my biggest personal challenge?

Will it be as hot as yesterday for the rest of the summer?

Will it be better at home?

Will Kathia let me go?

Will love ever find me?

Will me wife quit her job soon?

Will meditation make me a better person?

Will my career path be facing only one direction in the next year?

Will my current relationship last and will I (we) continue to grow and learn as a result?

Will my parent’s dog, Whiskey, get better?

Will my parents ever re-marry/date seriously?

Will Sara continue to hear?

Will the new phase bring mostly joy or distress?

Will there be peace on earth one day?

Will this all be worth it in the end?

Will this all have a good ending?

Will this new job work out for me?

Will we get bedbugs?

Will we leave NYC?

Will X finish what he started?

What percentage of people will treat “Sanatorium” as real therapy?

Would I be more disciplined if I became a vegan?

Would I find the right way to pursue my role?


Philisophical Casino is a series of polyhedra that work as dices or dreidels. Each side of these volumes features a philosophical quote. The player may ask a question and make the top spin, as one may ask an oracle. The act of spinning the dreidel breaks the barriers between the object and the user, an intimate relationship is created and in return for their question a philosopher provides a phrase to reflect on, be it an answer for an abstract question or advice to overcome a specific situation.

When asking an oracle, the mind is open to an intuitive interpretation of a symbol.

[Questions from New Yorkers at SANATORIUM Stillspotting, Guggenheim, NY]


Goodoo reaches India


Performing artist Anna Konkle, who participated as one of the therapists at the Stillspotting Sanatorium in Brookyln, recently partook in the Ashraya Inititative for Children, India, and with her she took Goodoo therapy. She transformed the therapy into a magic exercise for children who are part of the outreach program that helps over 200 children living in the slums of India.


The Ashraya Inititative has modest beginnings on the streets of India but has expanded in a a number of communities and developed several outreach programs.  The education outreach program is designed to help children enrol in school, provide them with materials they need and help maintain social and emotional well-being.  Two such children are Poonam and Rahul.  Anna reported back and this is her account of what happened….


“The two kids were in the younger group and they worked with the newspaper dolls- Poonam and Rahul.  Newspaper dolls- an adaptation of of Goodoo dolls was a success. Made of recycled Indian newspaper and twine- Poonam and Rahul chose a person for the doll to be and three colors only – each one having a meaning behind it. Maybe yellow was to be warmer or blue to have fun. Poonam chose herself and Rahul decided he didn’t want to make his with the Goodoo magic- he wanted a superman friend. So, after the paint had finally dried- we timed a minute of closing our eyes, touching our doll, and infusing the magic and wishes into them. When the time was over, we grabbed our magic plastic sheets and tied them importantly around the doll to keep the goodoo magic in. And then we waited a day or maybe a few years for our hopes to come true.  Thanks for sharing your art with us in India”.

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Ontological Algebra


Ontology is the philosophical study of the nature of being, existence or reality as such, as well as the basic categories of being and their relations. . In other words it aims to answer the questions such as “Who I am?” “What is the purpose of my life?” etc. In this therapy we use algebra to cast into a formula the key components of you as a person. Also we may take one problem which troubles you and express that problem as an equation or a graph. We teach you as well to modify this equation by introducing or subtracting new values and operations.

CNN report on the Sanatorium



Compatibility Test for Couples


The objective of this therapy is to discover the compatibility that one person has with another.  To experiment this circumstance the individual has to follow the instructions below.


Two large glasses.
A chopping board.
A blender or a juice extractor.
As many kinds of fruits and vegetables as possible.


1) Choose the fruit or vegetable with which you most identify yourself.
2) Choose the fruit or vegetable with which you most identify your partner.
3) Make juice out of both fruits or vegetables.
4) Mix them well.
5) Judge your compatibility as a couple by its taste.








Voodoo doll, or what in Haiti is called pwen, are magical surrogate for an intended target of sorcery whether for boon or for bane. This therapy is a positive iteration of the Voodoo doll, thus called “Goodoo”. Here we take a generic cloth doll and personalize it for it to resemble someone to whom you want to go some good. Then we use diverse materials, charms or tokens on different parts of the body to cause the specific good to that person. If you want someone to be kind at heart we may introduce a small bottle of honey in the chest of the Goodoo doll. If you want someone to finish a marathon we may add wings to his Goodoo doll shoes, etc.





Goodoo Report from Pedro Reyes on Vimeo.




This station offers a secular version of the ritual of confession. In exchange the person who leaves one secret will be allowed to hear someone else’s  secret from the archive. Write a secret and put it in bottle, put in inside a large basin full of water.  Pick another bottle and read the message.







The Vaccine Against Violence


To our minds a symbolic act has the equivalent power of a real act.  Consequently, destroying symbolically may free us from the need of having to do a real aggression. Based on this premise, the patient faces a headless dummy.  The participant is given a balloon and he has to blow it and draw on it the face of the person who has hurt him the most in his life. Then he is encouraged by the therapist to tell the dummy why he hates him so much and how much he was hurt by him and he is encouraged to get even by hitting the dummy until the balloon bursts. After this, he is given a placebo labeled as “Vaccine against violence”. In this way, the catharsis this therapy achieves makes redundant real acts of violence, freeing the subject from long-standing hatred.


For this therapy I consulted with Antanas Mockus (Colombian Mathematician and formar mayor of Bogota) a transcript of out conversations will be available in this blog soon.