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Trabalhei escrita criativa com centenas de pessoas, em espaços tão distintos como o João sem Medo, a Feira Alternativa de Lisboa, o Espaço Amar, o Museu Coleção Berardo (onde desenvolvi o projeto Desafios de Escrita, entre 2009 e 2015), a Faculdade de Letras da Universidade de Lisboa (onde lecionei a cadeira e dei cursos de verão) ou o Pavilhão do Conhecimento-Ciência Viva.
Escrever o Coração combina, pois, leitura/escrita (processos gémeos) com uma abordagem sagrada/mágica. O objetivo é alcançarmos um estado de fluxo criativo que nos permita escrever a partir do coração (e não da cabeça). Vamos usar estímulos musicais, poéticos e visuais para resolver bloqueios e aceder a um espaço de revelação e cura. Vamos aprender técnicas que poderemos usar no quotidiano, para estarmos cada vez em maior sintonia com o nosso propósito maior. Aqui e agora. Escreve-te*
Writing the Heart was directly inspired by the postdoctoral project I developed in the Museum Collection Berardo, one of the most important contemporary art collections in Portugal, now at Centro Cultural de Belém, where I had previously cooperated with the choreographer and cultural programmer Madalena Victorino and would later work with the artist and curator Ana Rito. From 2009 to 2015, I interacted with the visitors in the gallery proposing a dialogue between one of the art works (mainly contemporary photography authored by women) and an extract from Luiza Neto Jorge’s or Elizabeth Bishop’s poems. I then asked them to take a sit and write for some minutes about a topic close to their lives; in the end, I would suggest that they read their text aloud to me (in whatever language they had written).
It was an incredible experience that allowed me to deepen my ongoing research about corporeality — the way we inhabit the body taking into account the visual and verbal narratives that surround us — in the works of the abovementioned poets and the photographs of Helena Almeida and Cindy Sherman. It also taught me a lot about cultural performance and about the need to turn museums into living spaces, where visitors can interact with art on a personal level, as Alain de Botton (one of the founders of The School of Life) and John Armstrong thoroughly argue in Art as Therapy (click on the title for more info). Last but not least, I learnt to listen with the heart to texts in languages such as Mandarin or Hungarian, totally foreign to me, connecting with the readers’ message on a more subtle level.
In 2014, I conceived the project Writing the Heart that puts together meditation, yoga, and creative writing techniques at the service of human development. Once more linking visual and verbal texts — that is, works of art and literary excerpts — I have put together and implemented sessions in a myriad of contexts, such as alternative gatherings (Feira Alternativa de Lisboa; Festival Zen), dance festivals (Boom Festival); health associations (Associação Protectora dos Diabéticos de Portugal); theater festivals (FATAL – Festival de Teatro Académico de Lisboa); sacred sexuality retreats (DYONISIA); public libraries (Biblioteca FCTUNL, Campus Caparica); summer schools (Medicine and Narrative Project at ULICES; Verão na ULisboa: Letras Abre Mundos); and women circles. I have also developed dozens of workshops in a more clearly therapeutic context, integrating knowledge from the series of courses (click on courses for more info) I have taken in the areas of energetic healing and essential oils.
I have structured a course on the 7th chakras (13 sessions, 78h), and workshops on several topics, including Joy; Courage; Trust; Rejuvenating; Breakups; Bodily Awareness; Self Love; Personal Mission; Ecological Awareness; Gender Identity (2h to 6h). Having also experimented with creative writing techniques in my almost 25 years as a college and university teacher — in such diverse courses as English; Contemporary Arts; Visual Culture; or Modernist Literature, at undergraduate and graduate levels —, I feel ready to expand my service to the corporate context, and to collaborate with fellow Light Workers in national and international retreats.
“Que fortes são os anjos
quando arrancam do céu os impossíveis
e os devolvem, riso e sopro,
ao coração da terra
que os crê e os acolhe.”