“The theme of revenge is also implicit to his photo text work Needed-Erase-Him, 2006, which includes a textual extract from Valerie Solanas’s SCUM Manifesto. The quintessential revenge artist of sixties New York, Solanas shot Andy Warhol (“He had too much control over my life,” she said.) Briefly a feminist heroine, her manifesto (which her newly occasioned celebrity status after the shooting finally enabled her to publish) is one of the most outrageous documents of the American women’s liberation movement. The section Brandt quotes opens with the assertion: “The male rebel is a farce, this is the male’s society, made by him to satisfy his needs.” In Solanas’s worldview, male supremacy is indistinguishable from totalitarianism; Brandt’s citation closes with the observation that men are responsible for war. Solanas’s strident sentences are visually interrupted by the image of Brandt’s nude body draped in a Palestinian cloth. His head is completely covered,as if he is a woman in a chador, but more so—he is blinded by the fabric. Only his naked arms and legs are visible. The Palestinian cloth echos Wilke’s use of an Islamic headdress and represents the Arab world generally and the current wars between Christians and Moslems (which are nationalized and racialized, as well as religious, wars). The Palestinian cloth is a persistent prop in Brandt’s project; he also uses it as a headdress, skirt, sarong and blindfold in the seven Peter-Super-T-Art works. It signifies Scandinavia’s ethnic stereotyping of outsiders and functions as a sign of the patriarchal ideology Europe shares with the Arab nations. Brandt wants his viewers to reflect on the danger of all forms of identification: Whenever we identify ourselves with a group or idea, we participate in a form of exclusion and hegemony, of ‘us’ and ‘them’. Brandt’s project is developed out of the idea of being a ‘bad man’ (in English, the very etymology of ‘bad’ includes an Old English usage meaning ‘effeminate man’.) Brandt is not investigating the idea of a ‘bad’ man in a traditional moral sense, but in a political and social sense; in doing so, he calls into question the morality of gender and other social divisions”. (Laura Cottingham, extract from Peter Super-T-Art, page 42, 2007).
Needed-Erase-Him, Ink Jet print 40 x 26 cm. 2006