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Betta Splendens
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"I spent hours looking at the aquarium ...

It was so beautiful, its bright colors and long fins mesmerized me

submerged and undulating in the transparent liquid.

And I, between fascination and sadness, asked myself:

What do you feel, what do you think? Do you know you are "trapped"?

What would your existence be like if you only knew that you can be free? "

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BETTA SPLENDENS During my childhood I had aquariums in which my family housed countless small river fishes. Enchanted by their diversity and colors, I was strongly attracted to a very special one: the betta fish, also known as the “fighting fish”. Currently bred and quite popular in Colombia, it is characterized by its large and colorful fins, as well as its aggressive and territorial character.


Original idea, dramaturgy, creation and interpretation:

Andrea Paola Martinez

Audiovisual production: Cassetto visual arts. Camilo Jiménez.

Format: New audiovisual circus and photographic work.

Techniques: Dance, balances, aerial multi-strings, capillary suspension

Duration: 30 minutes

Betta fish usually have to be isolated inside aquariums in a small individual enclosure, on the one hand, to protect their long and beautiful fins from the attack of other fish that are attracted to them for their beauty and because, in turn, they are territorial and would fight to the death with another male fish that crosses their path. Inspired by this magical and at the same time tragic being of the waters, I wanted to investigate the opposite poles that this fish arouse in me and openly debate with everything that moves me, finding in its path a possible resolution through expression. The feelings of isolation, confinement, fear, aggressiveness, horror, territoriality in contrast to those of communion, freedom, happiness, lightness, beauty are played in Betta, who in addition to being this wonderful being of the waters, is I, my body and the forces that run through me. Intertwined with multiple memories and situations in my life, I found a meaning for the feelings that Betta generate in me. The magical-tragic country that saw me born and grow up, Colombia, reminds me of the same sensations as that tiny aquarium fish: the debate between the opposite poles, between life, death and the immense longing for freedom.


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Premiere, February 2021

Premiere of the photographic project February 15, 2021. Premiere of the audiovisual work February 20, 2021.

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Betta at the "International Festival of Circus Arts. Sun and Circus", Chile, 2021

Work in free circulation within the framework of the "International Festival of Circus Arts. Sol y Circo" in Chile, 2021. 

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Betta at the "XIII Women's Art Festival", Cartagena, Colombia. 2021. 

Work in free circulation within the framework of the "Female Art Festival for Hope and Reconciliation", Cartagena, 2021. 

Season at the XVI FTCB 2021

Work chosen in the programming of the XVI Bogotá Theater and Circus Festival, April, 2021. 

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Premiere, February 2021

Premiere of the photographic project February 15, 2021. Premiere of the audiovisual work February 25, 2021.

Creation residency at Eco-circo Colombia, January 2021.

Creation residence in the municipality of Cachipay, Cundinamarca, at the Eco Circo, Colombia.

Scholarship "Colombia on stage", Ministry of culture (2020 - 2021)

Winning project of the "Colombia on stage" scholarship; stimulus of the second phase of the portfolio of the Ministry of Culture of Colombia.

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