RITRATTO DI (work in progress 2017 - 2019)

project by ELENA PISU

first study: November 2017 / “Differenti sensazioni”, Officine Caos, Torino IT

current repertory

choreography ELENA PISU


live illustrations and paintings MICHELE DI ERRE

light design, fabric sculpture, sound design ANDREA SANGIORGI

production ALDES e TIDA (2017, con il sostegno di Mibact e Regione Autonoma Valle d'Aosta)

with the support of MIBACT - MINISTERO per i Beni e le Attività Culturali e del turismo / Direz. Generale per lo spettacolo dal vivo, REGIONE TOSCANA / Sistema Regionale dello Spettacolo

residencies Officine CAOS, Torino // Workspace Ricerca X Research & Dramaturgy – Associazione Stand'Ort e Fondazione Piemonte Dal Vivo

running time 40 min.

“And actually we got to the point that when we speak about the body, we could wonder, finally, what this body is, whether it is the pulsating of these bones and muscles, or whether it is that network of social connections and values, or even the indefinite sum of all the representations and viewpoints on the living world.”
(Francesco Marsciani)

A female body is moving in space while a painter reproduces its image on long sheets of paper, with charcoal, Indian ink and tempera: the painting takes shape and changes before the spectator's eyes.
Ritratto di is a variety of approaches between body and representation, happening in real time onstage. It is a conversation between a dancing body and a pair of eyes that observe it and portray it.
The vision of a body before it takes shape, still indistinct matter; the affirmation of a body in flesh and blood; the memory of the body and of its individual parts, the ways in which the iconography of every human age has shaped the female body in order for it to incarnate symbols adhering to the philosophical thought, the social corpus and the moral of its time.
Which symbols, which icons are created through or conferred to the body? Which body parts can be transformed in sacred images? The sacredness of the body, its purity, its nudity. The female body, a sacrificial lamb at the service of representation, body parts as sources of sacred icons. Dance is nothing but a dynamic evolution across countless icons, it generates an indivisible object that is more than the sum of its parts and awakens reactions that cannot be spoken, but are comprenhensible to the body itself.
Ritratto di tries to shed light on the ever-changing nature of the body, a potential child, man, woman, transforming it into a map of life experiences. At the same time, it asks questions about the gap between one's own perception and an external point of view: in portraying the dancer's naked body, the painter proposes a personal vision of that body image, making it his own and modifying it. Body and portrait occupy the same space and alternatively take the roles of object and subject, model and author, presenting the audience with two images that have the same origin but two different outcomes. Ritratto di is an invitation to question the way we see things and our ability to generate meanings from them: what are we looking at? How do we transform the images that are impressed in our eyes?


Enrico Pastore – – 14/11/2017

“... In Ritratto di Elena Pisu proposes an interesting consideration not only about the body in movement, but also about the way we look at it. It is an interesting question also for the critics: what do we see when we see? How much influence what we have seen in the past has on what we are watching in the fleeting moment of the performance? How much of what happens on stage is transformed by our gaze? Is the act of looking a form of betrayal of existence? There is no answer or, at least, there is an answer for each one of us. The important thing is to have posed the question. A good work, Ritratto di, well structured in its progression and dramaturgy that proves to be clear in its every step.“