A couple of blocks from my house in Montreal is a field, one of the few remaining undeveloped pieces of land in my neighbourhood. It’s a wild space, an abandoned space, a reclaimed space, a politicized space and a contaminated space which is also an oasis of biodiversity. Formerly owned by Canadian Pacific Railway, the field was purchased by the city of Montreal with the intention of being developed, despite resistance from the community.
As a free and unregulated space, it goes by several different names including the Maguire Meadow or, my favourite, Le Champ des Possibles: The Field of Possibilities. I have spent a lot of time in this field. I have sat and thought about my life, talked about life, set intentions for my life. I have run, drank wine, made wishes, made out and danced in this field. I have planted seeds, pulled weeds and picked up garbage. And for the first time, I’ve taught yoga in this field.
The yoga class was part of an afternoon portes ouvertes (open doors ~ a generic term used for a public viewing of space, and pretty funny considering this is the great outdoors with no door or walls) to raise awareness of the diverse flora and fauna which occupy the space. The class was like the space itself: open (everyone was welcome, regardless of ability or experience), diverse (young, old, French, English ~ there were even dogs and rats!) and wild (mats facing all directions, wind blowing in our faces).
All photos by Alexis Gagnon. See the rest of the photos on our Flickr page!