ABISSO (ABYSS)

A young woman is trapped in a separate dimension. She wanders in limbo until she reaches the surface again.

Filmed underwater in Tenerife, ABISSO portrays the feeling of living with a life-threatening disease. The film opens a metaphorical and autobiographical perspective on the emotional struggle during a 10-year long journey with cancer.
The underwater dance symbolises the feeling of being immersed in a separate dimension, disconnected from the rest of the world, a dimension where it is impossible to breathe.
ABISSO also portrays the last dance the author performed with her original blood. Several months later she successfully underwent a bone marrow transplant which radically transformed her body and immune system. The film frames the acknowledgement of the author's deepest fear and the courage to embrace her fate.
As visual metaphor, ABISSO evokes the power of the sea and the element of the water as source of life where all possibilities can emerge. By diving into processes of healing and resistance, ABISSO invites audiences to rethink the illness event through a performative perspective that can offer ground for transformation.

  • Sarah Pini
    Director
  • Ruggero Pini
    Director
    Impressione: Sabrina Mezzaqui (documentary), Bocca di Rosa (music video Musica Nuda), Nothing to me (music video Godblesscomputers)
  • Sarah Pini
    Writer
  • Sarah Pini
    Producer
  • Ruggero Pini
    Producer
  • Sarah Pini
    Key Cast
    Bocca di Rosa (music video Musica Nuda)
  • Monkeeastronaut
    Soundtrack
  • Sarah Pini
    Choreographer
    Bocca di Rosa (music video Musica Nuda)
  • Project Type:
    Documentary, Experimental, Short, Student, Web / New Media
  • Genres:
    Screendance, Illness Narrative, Anthropology
  • Runtime:
    2 minutes 38 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    August 8, 2018
  • Production Budget:
    600 EUR
  • Country of Origin:
    Italy
  • Country of Filming:
    Italy, Spain
  • Shooting Format:
    digital
  • Film Color:
    Color
  • First-time Filmmaker:
    No
  • Student Project:
    Yes
  • Moving Images International videodance festival
    Nicosia
    Cyprus
    December 18, 2020
    Official Selection
  • [C]Screen - Spring Dancefilm Festival
    Barcelona
    Spain
    April 14, 2020
    Official Selection
  • International Underwater Film Festival - Belgrade
    Belgrade
    Serbia
    December 22, 2019
    Official Selection
  • IntimaLente/IntimateLens Film Festival
    Caserta
    Italy
    December 20, 2019
    Official Selection
  • GEOFILMFESTIVAL
    Cittadella (PD)
    Italy
    November 21, 2019
    Official Selection
  • CHASS Australia Prize for a Student in the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences
    Melbourne
    Australia
    October 30, 2019
    Award Ceremony
    WINNER
  • Dance Cinema Film Festival
    Sydney
    Australia
    March 21, 2020
    Sydney Premiere
    Official Selection
  • DANCE CINEMA
    Worldwide
    June 1, 2019
    Featured film of the month
    Official Selection
  • Body Regulations - Festival March Dance
    Sydney
    Australia
    March 22, 2019
  • CHOREOGRAPHIC HACK LAB - Kings Cinema, MAAS, Powerhouse Museum
    Sydney
    Australia
    January 27, 2019
    New South Wales Premiere
  • Visual and Creative Ethnography Competition 2018 - Australian Network of Student Anthropologists (ANSA)
    Cairns
    Australia
    December 5, 2018
    Australian Anthropology Society (AAS) Annual Conference 2018, James Cook University
    WINNER
Director Biography - Sarah Pini, Ruggero Pini

I am an interdisciplinary researcher and artist based in Denmark. I work across the fields of anthropology, visual arts, film, dramaturgy, cognitive science, dance and choreography. My work has been presented in several venues across Europe and Australia and published on international academic journals.
I co-direct films with my brother Ruggero Pini, video-maker and director of photography based in Shanghai, who collaborated on NatGeo reportages and directed award-winning music videos and documentaries featured on Rolling Stone, WIRED & RedBull. Together we developed INFINITO, an experimental short film series exploring the relationship to cancer and its transformational aspects from an autobiographic perspective. ABISSO is our first episode.

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Director Statement

Our work captures the interconnections of movement, emotion and environment and how their dynamical relationships shape life narratives and sense-making. For us storytelling is about adopting an ecological perspective that considers all aspects of the story, the people, the places, the feelings, the audience involved. It will never be just a matter of facts. That's why we believe each frame should be meaningful, on point and possibly inspiring.