The digital project about Don Quixote, was meant to show the University of Mary Washington, along with ourselves how much Don Quixote has affected people’s lives. As a result, Don Quixote is across all kinds of media from books, to pictures, to movies. For my three objects, I chose Tilting at Windmills (a book), Don Quixote (a painting), and El Quijote Don Quixote (a movie) to cover the mediums that are forever affected by Don Quixote. For Don Quixote is one of the first major characters, and ideas that is spread across all mediums.
Tilting at windmills: History and meaning of a proverbial allusion of “Cervantes” Don Quixote. Wolfgang Mieder-University of Vermont-2006 is the book that I chose from the exhibit. Tilting at windmills is a book about the power that Don Quixote has. The title even pays reference to the phrase, “Tilting at windmills”, which means to attack illusionary enemies. This book talks about Tilting at windmills, as an expression that came as a figurative reference by John Cleveland when he published The character of a London diurnall in 1644. This is important because it shows how powerful a book like Don Quixote truly is. This one book is so strong that it bore two things, the adjective quixotic (striving for visionary ideals), and the phrase tilting at windmills. The book also talks about the proverbial phrases “to have windmills in one’s head”, (to have enemies in your head), and “to fight with a windmill”(to fight something, expecting it to be something else). Wolfgang Meider, is a professor of German and folklore at the University of Vermont. He is most known for his study in paremiology (the study of proverbs). The use of proverbs has helped Don Quixote spread across mediums as on of the first to really make an affect on the world of literature and art as a whole.
Don Quixote, .n.d., by Scott Gustafson is a work of art depicting Don Quixote and Sancho, at the windmills. This art is showing the scene where Don Quixote is telling Sancho that these windmills are actually giants and he is going to fight them all to rid Spain of these scum. Scott Gustafson is an American illustrator from Illinois. His art is inspired by the Golden Age of American Illustration, and due to this, his work is fairytale-like in appearance. As can be seen in the art that he has done of Don Quixote, it looks like a bright sunset, with chickens and sheep around them in an all around warm atmosphere. Nothing ominous or evil seems to be lurking in the background of this painting, which is relatable to Don Quixote’s child-like mindset. Scott Gustafson does an amazing job encapsulating the hero Cervantes depicts for us. This work relates to the world on Don Quixote, because it shows that Don Quixote spans across all medians. Art has a deeper meaning or expression, and this painting is about Don Quixote tilting at windmills.
El Quijote Don Quijote, 1993, Fernando Rey, Princeton, N.J.:Films for the Humanities & Sciences was the movie that I chose from the exhibit. In 1991-1992, El Quijote, was directed by Manuel Gutierrez Aragon, and starring Fernando Rey as Don Quixote, and Alfredo Landa as Sancho Panza. This six part series is seen by some as the best interpretation of Don Quixote to the screen. Fernando Rey, being a gaunt and lean man by nature, helped portray the characteristics Don Quixote as depicted by Cervantes. Alfredo Landa, who plays Sancho Panza, also helps Don Quixote come to life. These tv series faithfully depicts Don Quixote, as they were able to film in the region of La Mancha, with production design and acting that hit the series home. El Quijote helps educate the world about Don Quixote. The way that El Quijote depicts Don Quixote is one of the most faithful depictions to the novel. El Quijote has won five awards and has two nominations, showing the effect that the tv series has on the populace. Even making a Don Quixote movie, shows that Don Quixote transcends media formats and that shows the power that the novel has on people and art.
The project for Don Quixote, was to show how Don Quixote spreads across all mediums, even after 400 years, and the three examples have shown just that. There have been multiple books, movie and art all depicting Cervantes’ Don Quixote. To have a novel like Don Quixote written over 400 years ago still affect people’s lives shows the power of the novel. Tilting at Windmills by Wolfgang Mieder, shows how Cervantes’ novel Don Quixote, bore a proverb that is used in many literary works. There are also many references to Don Quixote in art, a main example being Don Quixote by Scott Gustafson. This piece of art perfectly encapsulates Don Quixote’s mindset. With the happy, fairy tail esk atmosphere of the paintings, where Don Quixote tells Sancho that he is going to slay these giants. The art is childlike just as is Don Quixote’s power of imagination. This art was done in 2016, which shows that Cervantes’ message is still clear 400 years later. The final piece of media that was chosen from the exhibit, was a spanish tv series from 1991-1992. This tv series is known as being very faithful to Don Quixote, although it only covers the first half of the novel. Fernando Rey, the actor that plays Don Quixote, does a great job portraying Don Quixote, even down to his gaunt, crazy manor. Since it is filmed in Spain, the tv series is able to film in La Mancha, and does great service to Don Quixote.
In conclusion, the exhibit of 400 years of Don Quixote shows the world that even after 400 years, people of all aspects of art are being influenced by Miguel Cervantes’ Don Quixote. From books, to paintings to movies, all encapsulates the ideas set by Don Quixote, and tries to teach others about them. The three examples chosen all aim at the idea of the windmill scene from Don Quixote, or some would say the most famous scene. Don Quixote has reached people around the globe, and will continue to far after 400 years. Don Quixote’s bout with a windmill even affects literature by creating a proverb tilting at windmills, which means creating enemies that are not there. Don Quixote, changed all of these peoples lives, and will continue to change others for many years to come.
El Quijote Don Quijote, 1993, Fernando Rey, Princeton, N.J.: Films for the Humanities & Sciences
“DON QUIXOTE”, n.d., by Scott Gustafson
Mieder, Wolfgang. Tilting at Windmills: History and meaning of a Proverbial Allusion to Cervantes’ Don Quixote. Burlington, VT: U of Vermont, 2006. Print.