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AMAZONA / A-Zone Cyborg
by Andressa Cantergiani

Interdisciplinary dance research project 

2022 >> Premiere on Saturday 17th of December @Uferstudios / Uferstr.23, 13357 Berlin! 19:30 doors open | 20:00 Events 

Invitation | Einladung
Event curation: Paz Ponce
Multi-media installation: Andressa Cantergiani Hosted inside the: Screen Air Pavilion (insurgencias.net: 2019)
Special thanks for the installation support: GA estudio + POPTICUM Collective Project technical assistant coordination: Gabriel Vallecillo, Andreas Harder

Portfolio of artistic collaborations 

AMAZONA or a Dance of Resistances #film (8'40'')

| Concept & Artistic direction: Andressa Cantergiani
| Performances & collective choreography: Andressa Cantergiani, Pêdra Costa, Daddypuss Rex, Julia B.Laperrière, Mzamo, Maque Pereyra, P.G.L  (Or Meilin)
| Self Defense instructors:Clarissa Fontana, Movement Lab Athens / Fight back club (Margarita Pita & Aris Pitas)
| Research, curation & dramaturgical support: Paz Ponce
| Direction of video choreography & photography: Maryna Marenko
| Film editor: Livia Massei | Color grading: Renato Batata
| Sound design & score:Alan Egedy
| Sound mastering: Zeno Mainardi

A-Zone Cyborg #3Dfilm (in progress)


| Concept & Artistic direction: Andressa Cantergiani | Performances of Characters 3d  & collective choreography: Andressa Cantergiani, Pêdra Costa, Daddypuss Rex, Julia B.Laperrière, Mzamo, Maque Pereyra, P.G.L (Or Meilin)
| Animation & visual art: Mert Akbal
| Script: Andressa Cantergiani & Paz Ponce
| Research, dramaturgical support & event curation:Paz Ponce
| Characters 3d modeling: Esteban Rivera | Sound Design & score: Alan Egedy
| Digital space consultants:
Ana María Millán, Mert Akbal| Project technical assistant direction & coordination: Gabriel Vallecillo, Andreas Harder 
|Graphic designer: Karen Hofstetter

Memory of the project

I'd Rather be a Cyborg than a Goddess
Cyborg Manifesto, Donna Haraway
This is my body. It has been an armor / With it you can't swim or fly. / Poor body, this one of mine, so close to the ground.
“Cyborg. This is my body, Luisa Miñana

A-Zone Cyborg is an interdisciplinary dance research project by Berlin-based visual artist, performer, mother and activist Andressa Cantergiani (Caxias do Sul, Brazil, 1980).
Inspired by the Greek myth of the Amazon warriors and its entanglements with Brazil’s colonial history, Cantergiani’s new project arises from the desire to extrapolate and desecrate Western myths, situating a creative feminist vision where struggle becomes a practice of self-care through self-defense.
Around this theme, the artist carried out a year-long performative and aesthetic research on both the iconography of diverse women warriors and the symbology of feminist militant struggles. This part of the research achieved a participatory dimension through the collaboration with curator Paz Ponce, backed by the Berlin-based NGO neue haute e.V., mediating a series of community meetings in their project-space at Uferstudios around the theme of combating gender violence.
A hybrid program of online & offline talks connected with collaborating agents active on intersectional feminism in Latin America and South of Europe, exchanging theoretical, conceptual and historical references for the project (Manoela Cavalinho, Cristina Ribas, Érica Saraiva from MARÉ - Artist collective & FREPLA/RS, Margarita Pita). This section of the project was funded by the Berlin Senate Department for Culture and Europe in the frame of the Fellowship-Program “Weltoffenes Berlin” /See: AMAZONA.

By early summer 2022, and after obtaining a production grant from NPN Joint Adventures / Neustart Kultur, the participatory program opened itself to a target community of dancers from the context at Uferstudios and a local audience of migrant women, in the shape of feminist self-defense workshops, with guest instructors coming from Spain (Clarissa Fontana) & Greece (Margarita Pita & Aris Pitas, Movement Lab / Fight Back Club Athens) who work on martial arts techniques and methodologies aimed at self-protection for women and LGBTQI+ people in everyday environments. The Greek collaboration in this research was funded by Onassis AiR.

This parallel movement research exploration became the dramaturgical base for the development of a new dance piece: 

AMAZONA or a Dance of Resistances

in collaboration with 7 dancers selected from the group of participants attending the workshops: Pêdra Costa, Daddypuss Rex, Julia B.Laperrière, Mzamo, Maque Pereyra and P.G.L (Or Meilin). The choreographic material was collectively generated during a two weeks practice exchange lab, where they shared with each other their personal movement interpretation of the concepts of resistance and self care in the context of combating gender violence. Video and editing became expanded choreographic tools in this performance (video direction & photography by Maryna Marenko, editing by Livia Massei.

Still frames from AMAZONA or A Dance of Resistances
Andressa Cantergiani, 2022
Photography: Maryna Marenko

By early autumn Andressa met with several advisors guiding the intersection between digital space & body towards the creation of a new 3D Film:

A-Zone Cyborg

Ana María Millán and Mert Akbal trained her via mentoring sessions in tools from motion capture technology, AI, computer games and cyberspace, in order to exchange knowledge from the dance field, the visual arts and new media techniques. The script for this film was developed between Andressa Cantergiani & Paz Ponce, and comprised a parallel plastic investigation in dialogue with Mert Akbal (xm:lab): “to challenge heteronormative animation and use digital image elements that would reflect a queer understanding of art and show resistance against stereotypes” /read more. The result is a rather dreamlike, glitched, post-utopian vision that traces an inverse hero-journey to the processes of Eurocentric mythification that the project reflects upon, immersing us in the celebration of a triumphant genderless collective space that ruptures the binary stagnation tensioning today’s (arched) world. This ultimate solar-punk emancipatory dance is narrated through five allegorical characters modeled by Esteban Rivera, in a soundscape (in progress) designed by Alan Egedy.

Frame from A-Zone Cyborg 3D Film
(in progress)
Character 3D modeling by: Esteban Rivera

On December 17th Andressa Cantergiani premiers these two outcomes at Uferstudios (Studio 16 & Ana Conda am Ufer), in a multi media installation assisted by Gabriel Vallecillo (neue häute e.V.).


Supported by:the NATIONAL PERFORMANCE NETWORK - STEPPING OUT, funded by the Minister of State for Culture and Media within the framework of the initiative NEUSTART KULTUR. Assistance Program for Dance. / Berlin Senatsverwaltung für Kultur und Europa
Sponsors: xm:lab experimental media lab / Hochschule der Bildende Künste Saar; Onassis AiR / Onassis Foundation.
In cooperation with: neue häute e.V.
Hosted at: Ana Conda am Ufer Café/Resto/Bar/Collective research space + Studio 16 + Heizhaus (Uferstr.23, c/o Uferstudios. 13357 Berlin),
Communication partners: insurgencias.net Berlin-based platform for socially engaged artistic practices & activistic positions from the South.
Project coordinator: Paz Ponce (neue häute e.V.)
Project accountant: Gaby Hundermarkt


  • CLARK, Andy. Natural-Born Cyborgs: Minds, Technologies, and the Future of Human Intelligence. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2003.
  • CUBONIKS, Laboria. The Xenofeminist Manifesto. A Politics for Alienation. London: Verso, 2018.
  • FEDERICI, Silvia. Beyond the Periphery of the Skin: Rethinking, Remaking, and Reclaiming the Body in Contemporary Capitalism. PM Press/Kairos, 2020
  • HARAWAY, Donna. A manifesto for cyborgs science technology and socialist feminism in the 1980s. New York: Routledge, 1991
  • HARAWAY, Donna. Simians, cyborgs, and women: the reinvention of nature. New York: Routledge, 1991
  • LEPECKI, André. Coreopolitica e Coreopolicía. ILHA, v.13, n.1, p.41-60, 2012.
  • RUSSEL, Legacy. Glitch Feminism - A Manifesto. London: Verso, 2020

Archive of public programme events

Femminist Self-Defense workshop by Clarissa Fontana

Dates: Tuesday 05th July 19:00 - 21:30 / Thursday 07th July 19:00 - 21:30 / Friday 8th July 19:00 - 21:30
Location: Ana Conda am Ufer (ACaU) c/o Uferstudios.
Uferstr.23, 13357 Berlin

Event 

Description: Feminist self-defence means, for me, a radical way of generating social change, providing tools to a collective to solve a very serious problem in an efficient way. It is a space to facilitate women's empowerment, breaking stereotypes about our weakness and vulnerability. It is about intelligent self-defence, involving the development of strategic ways of using our bodies and perceiving space, as well as keeping calm in order to make decisions. The aim is to acquire tools to respond to physical, verbal and/or psychological aggressions present or potential in our daily lives.

The idea is that participants learn to defend themselves from the natural potential of each one of them. For this, in addition to learning martial techniques, communication and adrenaline control, we will also work on creating controlled simulations of physical and verbal aggressions, thus putting into practice their innate and learned skills in a resolute way.

Femminist Self-Defense workshop by Margarita Pita & Aris Pitas (Movement Lab / Fight Back Club Athens)

FRIDAY 07th October 19:00 - 21:30
Location: Ana Conda am Ufer (ACaU) c/o Uferstudios.
Uferstr.23, 13357 Berlin

Event 

Description:A workshop around the topic of setting boundaries, for self-protection and self-defence, particularly seen from the perspective of femininities. It is more of a functional workshop to introduce the practice of self-protection in everyday environments.

Fight Back Club is a feminist/antifascist community that makes reality-based self defense training accessible to people who have been chronically excluded from such training, due to sexist, far-right, racist, and homophobic elements in the martial arts habitat.

Movement Lab is a safe space for physical theater laboratory training and movement-based projects against gender-based violence, and a staunch ally of the LGBTQI+ community.

Bio of facilitators: 
Clarissa Fontana
, Brazil 1977– One of ITKA’s Chen Taichi Chuan teachers, follower of Master Lucian Vida since 2011, has studied martial arts since childhood (Karate Do, Northern Shaolin Wu Shu, Yang Taichi Chuan). Clarissa has dedicated her martial arts studies to Taiji Quan since 2008, and since 2018 she has also been focusing on feminist self-defence, following Master Karin Konkle. She teaches Chen Taichi Chuan, Qi Gong and Feminist self defence in Barcelona.

Margarita Pita is a freelance lawyer, a mediator and a dramaturg based in Athens. She is a creative multi-hyphenate woman with a strong knowledge backbone in the legal field, a creative brain flourishing in the arts sector and a life-long commitment to physical theatre and martial arts. She has been the creative producer of numerous projects in Greece and Europe spanning community arts, cultural integration, arts programming, research, management and non-profit sector consultancy. She is the co-founder of Movement Lab. Her personal projects include Lets' keep in touch, a library project at the refugee camp of Skaramangas and Daddies don't cry, a performative research project in London on parental alienation through the eyes of a child of divorce. She is currently developing the performative research project “self, free, illusions, of, will / please place in the right order” with the support of the Onassis Air residency program.

Aris Pitas is a martial arts teacher, self defense instructor, physical educator and storyteller based in Athens. He is the founder of AKBAN Ninjutsu Itten Dojo, an inclusive martial arts dojo in Athens, as well as Fight Back Club, a self defense initiative against gender-based violence, currently active in Athens, Thessaloniki, Larisa and Crete. Aris is also the co-founder of Movement Lab. He has been working closely with Athens Pride since 2018, running workshops and consultation on self protection, boundary setting and self defense matters. He has also created the Handful of Rain storytelling game for kids ages 4 to 16, geared towards developing creativity and social, emotional and cognitive skills in an non-authoritative environment, and aiming to encourage honest, equitable, self-organized and solidarity-oriented interactions among children and teenagers.