Synergia Ranch / The Theater of All Possibilities

Santa Fe, New Mexico
Private Property
1964 - 1973
Synergia Ranch was founded by John Allen, a Harvard Business School graduate, metallurgist, amateur actor, and systems ecologist in 1969. The group began as an experimental theatre group in the Haight but Synergia Ranch rejected the trappings of hippiedom and the label of commune. Residents paid $45 a month and 10% of their income for room and board, dedicated themselves to side businesses, and scientific inquiry.  Named for Buckminster Fuller’s concept of synergy, where the whole is greater than the sum of its parts, Synergia members brought together ecology, art, theater, philosophy, medication, manual labor, and group dynamics to solve social and ecological crisis and give birth to a new world.

The geodesic dome at the heart of Synergia Ranch was constructed to exacting standards, unlike some of its counterculture brethren. The dome served as a meeting space for lectures on topics ranging from Sufism to  Fuller’s Spaceship Earth,  and theatrical performances by the Theatre of All Possibilities.

In 1974, the oil-heir Ed Bass moved into Synergia Ranch, eventually funding and founding the Institute of Ecotechnics, dedicated to ecological research, with Allen and the ambitious Biosphere 2 project. Today, Synergia Ranch still operates as an organic farm, conference center, and event space.

Nam semper semper ex
In porttitor pellentesque sapien

Annie Schneider

Communes in the New World

The question of how to live together—of how best to live together—is the foundation of any society. The last few years have exposed the fault lines in our current system: climatic catastrophe, economic crisis, supply chain collapse, civil unrest, rampant inequality, and a global pandemic. We live in congested cities and in potentially dangerous proximity, yet remain isolated. In light of these mounting pressures, it’s time to revisit the fundamentals. How to Live Together offers alternative ways of being, thinking, dwelling, and living. It calls into question every basic assumption and prevailing social norm: belief, sex, the nuclear family, property ownership, our relationship to land, production, and consumption. It is both a critique and a roadmap.