Diogo Marques, Ana Gago
MOIRA is an online cyberliterary artifact, by wr3ead1ng d1g1t5 (Diogo Marques, Ana Gago, João Santa Cruz), that invites the reader to enter the universe of the Enchanted Moiras. Beneath the waters of a digital well lies a weaving of words capable of (un)veiling the threads of time. Hiding in-between those lines, meanders the hissing voice of a Moira, even if disguisedly recombined with digital embroideries of present days. And while these threads cannot be erased, they can be cut and rejoined in a different order.
As long as one keeps (re)telling the story, there might be a chance for breaking the charm and setting free the Moira’s imprisoned specter. Responsible for casting potential (dis)enchantments, in MOIRA it is up to readers to decide to intervene. On the one hand, one might find the (dis)enchantment to be continuous and illusory. On the other hand, insofar as tales were told by third parties, (dis)enchantments might be helpful in highlighting the usually ignored perspective of the one who’s trapped.
From Greek Moirae and Roman Parcae to the Enchanted Moiras, stories around these mythological figures are a portrait of the civilization in which they reappear, transfigured. Often associated with the attraction for the unknown, strange, or forbidden, in-between the lines, the Enchanted Moiras often tell us stories from the history of places. But also stories of women that, similarly to Echo, were usually deprived of their bodies except for their voice. Feared and admired, enchanted and enchanting, giving and taking life at will, in the shape of a serpent with black or blond hair, at the bottom of a well or trapped in a castle tower, lying in a riverbed or hiding among rocks, bringing omens of good fortune or offering countless treasures, the Enchanted Moiras carry with them archetypes that help us situate some of the (mis)representations of gender, namely the ‘male gaze’, encompassing, for instance, female stereotypes concentrated on sexuality and emotions.
Following a participatory approach, the results presented will be previously developed through a series of creative writing workshops, with a group of women from the south region of Portugal. Nonetheless, it will be up to the readers at ELO2022 to activate the enchantment(s), hence bringing MOIRA’s voices to life.
Acting as coordinates on a map of intercultural territory where people, places, and poetry are permanently interwoven, for the purposes of ELO22, project MOIRA is intended to enable the introduction of the Enchanted Moira’s tales and their digital retextualization to an international community of e-lit artists/researchers, a temporary relocation allowing for an expanded reflection on gender stereotypes, women’s rights, and gender equality.
This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 101004949. This document reflects only the author’s view and the European Commission is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains.
About the Author(s):
Working at the intersections of science, art, and technology, wr3ad1ng d1g1t5 collective
(wreading-digits.com) has been betting on the potential of digital technological media as a
self-reflexive questioning with regard to haptic wreading processes and the materialities
derived from it. In the wake of an experimentalist tradition, wr3ad1ng d1g1t5 collective
continues the poetic and aesthetic concerns of creative researchers such as Ana Hatherly,
Ernesto Manuel de Melo e Castro, António Aragão, and Pedro Barbosa, namely by exploring
dialectical tensions between tradition and innovation, such as the ones conveyed by the
combination of computational creativity and the revitalization of intangible heritage.
Among the various exhibitions and art festivals in which they participated are PLUNC 2015,
ELO 2017, FOLIO 2017, FILE 2017, ARTeFACTo 2018, and ELO 2021. As a way of
reinforcing their work with local communities after two years of pandemic, project MOIRA is
set to constitute itself as one of the great challenges of the collective for 2022. Acting as
coordinates on a map of intercultural territory where people, places, and poems are
permanently interwoven, for the purposes of ELO22, project MOIRA is intended to enable
the introduction of the Enchanted Moira’s tales to an international community of e-lit
artists/researchers, a temporary relocation allowing for an expanded reflection on gender
stereotypes, women’s rights, and gender equality.
Institute for the Study of Literature and Tradition (IELT), NOVA FCSH; Universidade Católica Portuguesa, School of Arts, Research Center for Science and Technology of the Arts (CITAR); wr3ad1ng d1g1t5
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