I draw this to illustrate Vanity Dust’s short story “Charly, el lisérgico despertar del niño tabernero”, both of them published in the 13th issue of Vinalia Trippers magazine.
This issue is centered on the dirtiest and most disgusting Far West (“more Sergio Leone’s than John Ford’s”, as Vicente Muñoz Álvarez says in the introduction); and Vanity Dust’s story, set in the classic saloon full of abusers, prostitutes and drunkards, doesn’t betrays the myth. As a whole it was an excellent breeding ground that gave me the opportunity to do what I enjoy most, that is, subverting. In this case, I wanted to use this fictitious past to confront some of the mocking and disdainful meanings which at actual present usually coat certain concepts:
– On one hand, those meanings attached to cross-dressing and transgender.
– On the other hand, those meanings attached to eroticism or sexuality starred by old women and/or non-normative bodies, eroticism which is stated by their words, their gestures or their clothes.
In both cases, society considers that there is a divergent behavior, which is only justified or accepted as part of a show, offered to an audience for its pleasure and amusement. This way, eccentricity is allowed to act freely and there is nothing to worry about, because oddity is funny, is entertaining, is witty, is governable.
In this mass-mediated and totalitarian world, divergence is only tolerated if it is humorous, compliant, scintillating, recreational, momentary, laughable, risible; and above all, if it is circumscribed within very specific contexts and using a very specific language. Out of there, it is considered despicable, shameful, illicit, even offensive.
But divergence does not exist to amuse nor entertain anybody. What others see in divergence does not define the divergent, and much less has the right to authorize it or not.
Do whatever the hell you love. Be whatever the hell you are.