Je Suis Malade

In the video "Je Suis Malade” (2008) a 10 year-old long-haired blond girl is reinterpreting the French chanson "Je Suis Malade", originally sung by the Egyptian-born French singer Dalida. The video is filmed in such a way, that the performer is standing peacefully in an unidentifiable dark space so that only she is visible. The content of the song the girl is singing has a theme that is inappropriate for her age. In fact, the text is speaking about a woman in great pain due to her unrequited love. Formally the video is made in one single shot and loop-projected. The song’s lyrics, which highlight love sickness and paralysis it ensues, contrast with the child’s performance, which amounts to an instrumentalisation of the quintessence of youthful innocence for purposes of visual consumption. Indeed, this blonde girl becomes herself the generic child attempting to convey to us a product in a language and experiences foreign to her. This is in and by itself a subtle illustration of the pathology (malady) of our globalize consumerist society.

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