Dani d'Emilia,
Vanessa Andreotti
& GTDF Collective




Accept its invitation to
be present. Tune in with
the collective body, both human and non-human.

Take notice
of all the skins
and places we inhabit, the bones and lands that bear our weight.

Feel your entanglement with everything, including
the ugly, the broken and
the fucked up.

Relate beyond desires for coherence, purity and perfection.




Dance beyond the loop of identification and dis-
identification, beyond what you like and dislike.

Stop trying to shape reality according to narcissistic compulsions for pleasure, comfort and convenience.

addictions to consumption, not only of “stuff” but also of knowledge, experiences, and relationships.

Let go of
of possessiveness.
  Renounce fantasies of comprehension,
and control.

Disarm, declutter,
and decenter yourself.

with a wider metabolism, with a much longer temporality than your human body.

non-normative and non-linear time.

cravings for protagonism, greatness,
and legacy.

fearing fear, uncertainty, and

Be open to
the gifts of
dis-illusionment and
  Surrender without collapsing.




Make space
for the unknown
and the unknowable,
in ourselves
and in others.

rather than meaningfulness.

Allow your state of wonder to stay open, without always trapping it into meaning.

Don't hold “being” hostage to “knowing”.

Engage with creativity beyond the intellect.

Recover exiled capacities, expand sensibilities and
dis-immunize intimacies.

Notice the
ways in which our thoughts and emotions are biophysical processes.

Listen to
non-human authorities, and care about our relationship with them.

Be open to what you can't and may never understand.

Don't cast upon everything a blanket of interpretation, silence
the noises preventing you from digging deeper, relating wider.




Be receptive
to the
teachings of your shadows.

Mourn your illusions, compost your shit, ferment yourself.

Learn from repeated mistakes.
  Make only new ones in
the future.

Discover a whole bus
of different creatures
inside yourself.

Look into
the mirror
and release
the fear of disappointability, rejection and abandonment.

Face your complicity in violence and disinvest from arrogance, superiority,
and status.

Let go of the fear of “being less”, the pressure for “being more” and the need for validation.

Deprivatize failures, depersonalize lack.
We all fuck up, we all cry.

Deactivate your expectations
for belonging and focus
on unlearning
the logic of

Embrace yourself as both cute and pathetic, be courageously vulnerable.




Make room for new forms of
co-existence to encounter you.

Renounce unrestricted autonomy and the obsession with form.
  Find stability in the rhythm beneath the movement.

Activate the sense of hearing in all
parts of your body, so that through listening we can witness and heal each other.

Listen to unuttered wisdom, nurturing intrinsic, rather than productive value.

that our medicines
are both indispensable and

Let us
“have each other's backs”
rather than
“back each other up”.

Tune in,
rather than
empathize with.
  There's a difference.

Notice how
you move
your comfort, stretch and panic zones.

Increase care
in proportion
to risk.
  Do it with humility, generosity and reverence.

Dissolve the limits and weight of your body, allowing others to move through, with and for you.




Turn the heart into a verb: corazonar, senti-pensar.

Look at painful and difficult things with the love of really wanting to see.

Feel the pain
of the earth passing through you.

that the earth
is not an
extension of our bodies,
it's the other way around.

Collectivize your
heart so that it breaks open and not apart.
  Let it hold
the pain of –and
in– the world without being numbed or overwhelmed.

Witness “being”
in several
“me and you”,
“me in you”,
us in “neither me nor you”.

Forget being either or, be both and more and moving.

Tend the wounds created when the skin holding one body stretches and tears
in order to receive and be refigured by another.

Condition your intellectual, political and affective muscles for facing storms and running marathons
in tortuous terrains.

Allow yourself to be guided
by a metabolic intelligence.
  Enable neurogenesis and learn to breathe water.
Be water.

Co-sense with
practice engaged detachment. Offer palliative care to the dystopic world that
is dying, both within
and around us.
Digest the teachings
this death offers.

Co-sense with
assist with the
birth of something new, without suffocating
what is being born with projections and idealizations.

Co-sense with
invoke and evoke
–in a double and simul-
taneous movement–
the manifestation of a political practice of
healing and well-being that is beyond what human intelligence can fathom. Allow it to come through you, forever changeable and fluid.

"Co-sensing with Radical Tenderness" is a text Dani d'Emilia and Vanessa Andreotti began to write in 2018, based on thoughts expressed by the collective Gesturing Towards Decolonial Futures [GTDF]. Initially called “An Invitation to Radical Tenderness”, this text has been shape-shifting alongside their artistic-pedagogic collaboration “Engaged Dis-identification”, which attempts to translate post-representational modes of engagement into embodied experiments that reconfigure the connections between reason, affect and relationality. The current version of the text has been revised in June 2020. In 2021 Dani and Vanessa also began curating an online series entitled "Co-sensing with Radical Tenderness: art-life ritual actions for metabolic reattunement" in which different artists respond to the text. The series can be accessed here: More information on GTDF here:

Radical Tenderness is a term that Dani first encountered through the work of the performance collective La Pocha Nostra (MX/US), which they were a part of between 2009-2016. In order to honour its genealogy as a term as well as its activation as embodied practice, it is fundamental to also recognize the importance of the radical work with tenderness of the trans artist, activist and educator Lia La Novia Sirena (MX).

RT is an entity-force that moves, transforms and disseminates itself in many diferent ways. Over the last decade Dani’s work with RT has involved an embodied investigation of its intimate, political, and metabolic movements, which has included creating performances, workshops and writings that attempt to nurture radically tender ways of being. In 2014 Dani undertook a Masters Degree focusing on Radical Tenderness as a political-affective performance-pedagogy practice and upon joining the GTDF collective in 2017, they began working with Vanessa Andreotti to mobilise Radical Tenderness as one of the medicines the collective uses to help reconfigure the connections between reason, affect and relationality. An early Radical Tenderness manifesto written by Dani in collaboration with Daniel B. Coleman, formerly Daniel B. Chavez (2015), as well as more information about their work with RT in various contexts, can be accessed here:

The term co-sense is used by different artistic and activist movements with different connotations. The work of Caro Novella with Quimera Rosa introduced us to an important contrast between consenting and cosensing that enlarges the field of intimacies beyond human interactions, which resonates with indigenous ancestral teachings at the core of the “Web of 5 Cures”, whose practices inspire our text. Our use of the term co-sense refers to a movement of decolonization (Stein, et. al. 2019) that involves various invitations, including dethroning the ego, decluttering affective landscapes, and disinvesting from violent and unsustainable systems.


d’Emilia, D. e Chavez, D. (2015). “Manifiesto de la Ternura Radical”. In Hysteria Revista, n. 8, 2015. access: 08/18/2020.

Novella, C. (2019). “From Consent to Cosense: Rehearsing ecologies of exposure within Quimera Rosa’s Trans*plant, my disease is an artistic creation”. In Revista Corpografias: Estudios críticos de y desde los cuerpos, 6(6), pp. 134-152.

Stein, S., Andreotti, V., Suša, R., Amsler, S., Hunt, D., Ahenakew, C., Jimmy, E., Čajková, T., Valley, W., Cardoso, C., Siwek, D., Pitaguary, B., Pataxo, U., d’Emilia, D., Calhoun, B., Okano, H. (2020). “Gesturing Towards Decolonial Futures: Reflections on Our Learnings Thus Far”. In Nordic Journal of Comparative and International Education, Vol. 4(1), 2020, pp. 43-65.

We wish to thank all the people with whom we have been collaborating directly and indirectly in the different contexts in which we have continued to (un)learn through Radical Tenderness over the years, among them the "Free Home University", where we met in 2017, the experiences organised by the networks "Gorca Earthcare" and "Teia das 5 curas", dhich integrate the work of the GTDF collective, and the "Dis-immunization Practices", co-created with Fernanda Eugenio. We would also like to thank the Musagetes Foundation for the support given to the different weavings of the GTDF collective. Thank you also to Musagetes Foundation for the support offered to different weavings of the GTDF collective.

This book was designed by Laura Daviña at Publication Studio São Paulo in June 2020.

ISBN 978-65-990888-2-7