Meditation Circus
Installation, research

The Meditation Circus, an immersive and meditative experience by means of simple technology. 

It’s like you’re being held and something or someone is giving you a lot of attention. In all the hustle and bustle, I suddenly felt safe.” – Bryndis

“During this experience it is all about very small nuances. It’s like you’re given a lot of time to arrive, and the work speaks to you and says: ‘Come, it’s ok, you can relax now….” Marloes

It is another form of meditation, in which you move with the rhythm of the installation. I can go to sleep like this… or start the day, because it also gives you energy.” – Faedan

You find yourself in a white, cathedral-like space that is sustained by air. Barely noticeable, the space becomes smaller, and objects come closer and land on your body. What follows is a tender touch. Not by human being, but still. As the space re-inflates and the objects retreat to their starting positions, what remains is a feeling of being held, lifted up and having entered the present moment and your body. 

The Meditation Circus arose from a personal desire to stretch time and reconnect with the body. Touch, isolation, skin hunger, security and being in touch with yourself are part of the global conversation due to Covid-19. Everyone has experienced first-hand what a lack of human touch and contact can do to you, and how the technology we depend upon seems to take us further away from our bodies. Vonk experiments with technology that can play a helping role in returning to the present moment. 

The spectacle performed by this circus happens on the inside, re-establishing a connection with your body by offering subtle sensory stimuli that create an experience that is simultaneously clinical, sensitive, kinky and meditative. Teun Vonk explores the non-human touch by means of technology. The Meditation Circus invites you to observe time, rhythms, your own breathing, the weight of your body, and to let go of control.

With The Meditation Circus, Vonk aims to create a meditative experience for a broad audience. Every body, irrespective of knowledge of art or meditation, can experience this work in an equal manner. Every body carries the subject matter within. From a state of relaxation, Vonk wants to initiate a dialogue between people about their physical sensations.

“A wonderful experience. It feels like a tender non-human touch that really does affect you. I associate the tent you are in with isolation and quarantine, but also with the safety of an enclosed space. This installation highlights the positive side of this: the time for reflection.” – Olav

“I feel caressed, embraced and comforted. When the bags went up again it was like a cloudy sky moving away from me, suddenly it was the universe. That was the most beautiful moment.” – Bernadette

“Can I live here? It felt for a moment as if everything was lifting off the ground, a bit like floating.” – Mara

The Meditation Circus is developed with support of Mondriaan Fonds & Bank Giro Loterij Fonds