Untitled (Don Quixote)
Panos Sklavenitis, 2019
Don Quixote inspired an alternative 'manliness', that of a sensitive, eccentric anti-hero, whose variety of readings exposed a radical critique of the patriarchal constructions of masculinity and femininity.
Panos Sklavenitis presents an excerpt, a cover on Don Quixote. In the original Cervantes novel, the reader can hear the different positions of the heroes. Ιn these positions, one can hear Pantha's donkey's view, or rather the donkey's fantasy of an alter ego; a hybrid that resembles a sort of scientific genetic experiment and of which Sklavenitis draws a digital portrait. This creature is a catalyst in Sklavenitis' cover of Don Quixote, as it works sweepingly over the idea of 'alternative' models. The alternatives will always be located within the patriarchal canon while the donkey's 'experience' presupposes a post-human transcendence.
The work presented by Sklavenitis as part of the Centre's 2019-2020 Reading Group 'Feminist Practices in the Age of Globalized Technology II' concerns rhizomatic readings of the text (which is a working text for a performance) that will link this text to other text references related to femininity and masculinity, gender roles and the post-human condition. For many, the scandalous provocations of Cervantes' about the positions of his novel's heroes are what makes his work revolutionary. This technique is said to activate 'inert readers' who transform while enjoying the read. Sklavenitis adopts this scandalous, seemingly naive provocation, triggering the guilty pleasure of our persistent humanitarian patriarchal positions and internalizations.