Photo credits: Jan Ahlstedt

My artistic practice intertwines various forms of expression, ranging from physical theatre to martial arts, meditation, drawing, and music improvisation. I am an actor, illustrator, theatre pedagogue, and martial artist, and I teach tai chi, meditation, and shaolin kung fu at different departments of the Theatre Academy of Helsinki. Anchored in the dialogue between art and spirituality, my work brings me to lead workshops and seminars in various institutes of adult education and interfaith studies in Finland and Italy.

My background includes Tai Chi, Shaolin, and other styles of traditional Kung Fu of North China, in the lineage of Master Chang Dsu Yao. I have practiced martial arts since the age of six.

My early education accustomed me with different meditative practices, such as the Kriya Yoga taught by Paramahansa Yogananda, the Catholic Rosary, and later, Vipassana meditation in the tradition of S.N. Goenka. In the years 2010-2017 I gave lectures and workshops about oriental psycho-physical practices at various conferences and events on interfaith dialogue, such as Taize (Helsinki), Torino Spiritualità (Turin), and International Conference Anthony Elenjimittam (Assisi).

After my graduation at the Theatre Academy Silvio D’Amico (Roma, 2001), I have worked as an actor and director for two renowned Theatre Companies in Torino: Compagnia Anna Bolens and Torino Spettacoli. I have taught acting in diverse contexts, including primary schools, secondary schools, universities and corporate entities.

Together with Fabrizio Nicastro (Italian movie actor, and black belt of Ju Jitsu) I developed a stage-fighting method which combines physical theatre techniques with martial arts: Nataka-Do. In the years 2001-2008, we led workshops and courses of Nataka-Do at the Yoshin Ryu Zero Centre (Torino).

Mixing the media of graphic novel and theatre arts, in the years 2002-2005 I conducted seminars and workshops in collaboration with Centro Didattico per i Linguaggi della Comunicazione (Torino).

I moved to Finland in 2008. During my Master studies in Theatre Pedagogy (TeaK, 2011-2013), I began my artistic research on meditative silence, in cooperation with the dance pedagogue Eerika Arposalo, and the University Chaplain Rev. Henri Järvinen. Our final production was a performance, built throughout a four-month-work without use of speech: Moving the Silence (Teak, February 2013). [1]

After my graduation, I led a one-year project with a team of artists: Hermits in Progress. The experiment was articulated in twelve retreats. Our aim was to make ascetic practices accessible to people with an average working and family life. [2]

One of my latest major artistic productions was a ten-day public meditation retreat, held in the entrance hall of the Theatre Academy of Helsinki: Sharing silence (Teak, October 2018).

My Illustrations were published in the books L’Isola della Beatitudine (2020), and Conversando con l’Eterno (2021) by Anthony Elenjimittam, publisher: Ecumenismo Cosmico Ora, Roma.


[1] Goria, G. 2014. Moving the Silence. In: Mimesis Journal. Torino: Accademia University Press. Vol. 3. N. 1, pp. 66-77

[2] Goria, G. 2015. Active Silence – reinventing spirituality through art-research. Milano: Mimesis