Nightwalk with guests



This is a good way to connect with past generations — always handy when visiting the future. It is also a way to share personal background and stories in the group, and to invite the supernatural into your activities.


When travelling into the future it is always nice to connect to the luggage we carry from the past. If we are to visit future generations, it seems useful to connect with our ancestors too.

Organise a walk with the group during which several activities can take place. Before leaving, invite the participants to invite a ghost that will accompany them during the walk. This ghost can be a relative or an acquaintance that passed away, it can be a historical figure… as long as the participant feels a strong connection with the ghost they choose, anything goes.

Once the choice is made, ask the participants to choose an object and to contact their ghostly guest. In the intimacy of their homes, the participants will then perform a ritual in which they invite their ghost to inhabit this object. The chosen object can be anything, but should be easy to bring on the walk. It shouldn't be a burden to carry. There are no instructions for this intimate ritual; it's up to every participant how they want to go about, and nothing about the ritual will be shared with the rest of the group. But obviously, it is crucial that the ritual takes place.

Once you are out for the walk, everyone carries their object and their ghost, but none of this is mentioned. Even so, the invited ghosts are hosted by the whole group during the walk. This implies care and gentleness from everyone.

Somewhere in the middle of the walk, pick a nice spot for the group to sit down and rest for a while. This spot should be a comfortable one, where it is easy to talk in group. Now ask everyone to briefly introduce their object and their ghost to the rest of the group. They can talk about how they relate to the ghost, how they experienced its presence during the walk so far… After listening to the story of a participant, and before moving on to the next one, let the group welcome the invited spirit by saying in chorus: “Welcome —name of the ghost in question—, we are happy you could join us on this walk.

Of course this activity can easily become a bit ridiculous, but tongue in cheek is to be avoided. Ask the group to suspend their disbelief and play the game. If everyone does, the presence of these ghosts can almost become tangible.


Nightwalk with Guests from the Future
Some people say that ghosts of everything that will be born in the future already exist in the present. Instead of inviting a ghost from the past, invite a ghost from the future you have imagined with your group. This exercise can be used to develop further the imagination of this world or future.


Diederik P. invented this activity in the frame of a collective workshop organised by Gosie Vervloessem and Carine Meulders at WP Zimmer in spring 2020, entitled 'Horror and Anthropocene'. During this workshop we went for a nightwalk in and around Brussels and everyone was asked to propose an activity during the walk.