Ramiro Villapadierna
Director of Instituto Cervantes in Frankfurt am Main

Don Quixote is the only novel of chivalry in history that four centuries later, is still translated and published every year.

And because the so-called „first novel of history“ is actually a work about the longed-for, lived and suffered life… it is a human life, any life, like yours and all others; that‘s why it‘s a deeply democratic story.

It is insignificant that it is the story of a madman, somewhere between a prank and a simpleness… On the contrary, Don Quixote has a philosophical claim to reason, and it is a book that in itself seems to contain the world.

The Castilian hero rides between the Middle Ages and the modern era. And he is modern because he alone defends people against the masses and against the world… who presents freedom as the most valuable and essential good, and sets the will to do and change in motion. He even goes so far as to elevate something as up-to-date as the worldview through his own senses, and thereby makes the experience of true reality more costly, forcing us to face the false and established realities that convince us of ourselves.

Don Quixote was voted the best novel in history, perhaps because he speaks for himself and for all people at once. Therefore, he is a hero who lives and will continue to live in every reader and in their daily struggle; and his story is therefore not over and will never end.

The Instituto Cervantes Frankfurt has asked the renowned international artist Bernardí Roig (Palma de Mallorca, 1965) to participate in the European project „Artist Don Quijote,” to present his interpretation of man‘s efforts and the blows of fate. He does this by confronting them with reality and the powers that be in the world, like the cavalier Don Quixote, who we all are, every day and every night of our lives.