Based on the 1998 novel of the same name by French psychoanalyst Françoise Davoine.
Genre: Theoretical Fiction | 120mins | Colour | Multi-lingual with English subtitles
If your mentally ill patient dies, are you to blame? For Dr Françoise Davoine, Parisian psychoanalyst, this question becomes disturbingly real as one of her patients, Ariste, dies. Davoine is abducted and put on trial by mediaeval fools and through the course of one hellish night - across several centuries and countries – must argue her case for exoneration.
As the journey forces Dr Davoine to question her own life, via a mix of fiction, documentary and theory, Mère Folle takes the viewer on a one-of-a-kind journey into the minds of the 'mad' and those designated to cure them.
Mère Folle (2010) was launched with specific audiences in mind. A Long History of Madness (2011) is the international film of this project, released for the general public.
Screenings & Events
Across Europe and America we are involved in conferences, film festivals and art museums, to discuss the theoretical and practical themes of our project.
Spatialising the content of the film offers us the possibility to screen the work in museum and art gallery contexts, in order to create different experiences of the images.
This is an on-going long-term project, to present a number of articles, interviews, set photographs and behind the scenes making-of photographs.
Latest update, 24.01.2013
Hello all, again it has been a long time. This time the reason is, on top of continuing screening and doing more exhibitions, we are also in the middle of our latest project: Madame B. In a sense this is a continuation of our works that explore different forms of alienation. After working on migration, we looked at madness as 'the last frontier' of discrimination. In the new project, we consider something even closer to our own lives, the emotional investment of the acquistion of commodities as promoted by capitalism, and conversely, the commodification of desire and romantic love. We examine this on the basis of Gustave Flaubert's prophetic novel Madame Bovary. In January we will be in Paris to complete the filming. For more information about the first big shoot on Åland: http://bit.ly/UrpjGJ
As an opposite order of our Mère Folle Project we first edit the installations and then will work on a feature length cinematic film.
Meanwhile the following exhibitions have been held after our last update.
Be My Witness at VBKÖ, Vienna in May 2012. This small exhibition joined intimacy to a sense of history. It consisted of a wall-filling large projection of Sissi's Treatment, now titled Eine zweite Chance, a smaller video on a monitor presenting Sissi Outside, and a vitrine with props - jewelry, gloves, a hat, Sissi's music box - combined with three dresses hanging from the ceiling. This ensemble we titled Sissi's Skins. See: http://bit.ly/Urn32q
We also screened A Long History of Madness for a whole week, its longest run to date at Topkino, Vienna.
Our next show was Past Landscape: Among Old Masters in Göttingen at the Kunstsammlung der Georg-August Universität Göttingen. A bit like our installation Anachronisms in the Guggenheim Bilbao Museum, we combined our project with old master paintings. In this case, the works were installed amongst the old master paintings in the galleries. Afterwards the museum acquired the pieces for their collection.
For more information and images: http://bit.ly/RdvCB7
In June, we exhibited Cosas Imposssibles at the Centro de las Artes in Monterrey, Mexico. In an enourmous park, the terrain of a steel-melting industrial complex, called Parque Fundidora, the old industrial complexes have been transformed into exhibition space, cinema, concert hall, playgrounds, and more. It contained 15 of the 16 installations pieces that we showed for Landscapes of Madness in Turku. For more info and images: http://bit.ly/SS1Bnf
Finally, we made Saying It, a very different kind of exhibition at the Freud Museum London. We made what our curator Joanne Morra called a 'site-responsive' exhibiton. Individual sessions of Sissi's Treatment were dispersed through the house of Freud, including the famous couch. Visitors could follow her treatment and piece it together in their own way. For more info and images see: http://bit.ly/YUh9fy
There is a beautiful catalogue with a DVD available from Occasional Papers: http://bit.ly/RdC0IS
We will be back in the new year to let you know where we will be posting information about the Mère Folle and Madame B. projects. Wishing you all a lovely holiday and happy new year.
Mieke & Michelle