Skip to Content

Department of Cognitive Science

Sarah Pini

Sarah Pini

PhD Student

Contact Details

Office : 3.526
Phone : +61 2 9850 2942
Fax : +61 2 9850 6059
email :
Homepage :

External Address

Department of Cognitive Science
Australian Hearing Hub
16 University Avenue
Macquarie University NSW 2109

I also have a profile at the ARC Centre for Excellence in Cognition and its Disorders.


I graduated MA in Cultural Anthropology at the University of Bologna and BA in Visual Arts at Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne University, after I trained professionally in ballet and contemporary dance in several renowned European Institutions for over fifteen years.
I'm currently a PhD Candidate in Cognitive Science at the Macquarie University, working interdisciplinary on embodied cognition in different systems of skilled movement. My research intends to shed light on the role played by environment, cultural, social and historical context and aesthetics in shaping the embodiment of stage presence among skilled movement performers.

Thesis Details

Dancing bodies, shaped minds: An ecological approach to kinesthetic intelligence.

  • Scholarship : iMQRES
  • Workload : full time
  • Supervisors : Professor John Sutton, Professor Greg Downey, and Dr Julie-Anne Long

Selected Publications


  • Pini, S., McIlwain, D.J.F., & Sutton, J. (2016). Re-tracing the encounter: Interkinaesthetic forms of knowledge in contact improvisation. Antropologia e Teatro: Rivista di Studi, 7, 225-243. doi:10.6092/issn.2039-2281/6268

Conference Presentations, Colloquia, and other presentations

  • Pini, S. (2017, July). Presence in the wild, an ecological approach to stage presence ['Work in Progress' panel presentation]. Paper presented at the NewMac Humanities Postgraduate Conference, Macquarie University.
  • Pini, S. (2016, December). Embodying otherness: The heterotopic body in cancer experience. Paper presented at the Australian Anthropological Society Annual Conference, The University of Sydney.
  • Pini, S., McIlwain, D., & Sutton, J. (2016, August). Metaphors we dance by: On ‘falling’ and kinaesthetic experience. Poster session presented at the ARC Centre of Excellence in Cognition and its Disorders Annual Workshop, The Fairmont Resort, Leura.
  • Pini, S., McIlwain, D., & Sutton, J. (2014, October). Metaphors we dance by: On 'falling' and kinaesthetic experience. Poster session presented at the Enacting culture: Embodiment, Interaction and the Development of Human Culture Conference, European Research Network TESIS, Heidelberg, Germany.
  • Pini, S. (2014, March). Dancing bodies, shaped minds: An ecological approach to kinaesthetic intelligence. Paper presented at the Music, Cognition and Action Symposium, MARCS Institute, University of Western Sydney, Sydney.

Further Information


Who is Visiting

Contact Details

Telephone: (02) 9850 9599
Fax : (02) 9850 6059
Email :
Web :