JE CROIS QUE JE SUIS MALADE • I BELIEVE I AM SICK
HDV, 24’28’’, no sound, Espace Artcore, Maison Molière, Paris, 2009
„Je crois que je suis malade“ was developed for the exhibition "wasistdas" at Espace Artcore, Paris. This show was held in the apartment where French playwright Molière lived. He died there in 1673 after a performance of his last play "The Imaginary Invalid", a comedy about hypochondria, health mania, belief in doctors, lack of attention and the public display of illness and ego. These very modern themes in combination with the special location were the background for Clemens Wilhelm's performance.
During the opening the visitors of the show individually entered a white room which was closed off with white hospital curtains. This room only contained a chair and a camera. The visitors were told to take a seat and speak the sentence "Je crois que je suis malade (I believe I am sick)" into the camera. For all other visitors and even for Clemens Wilhelm it was invisible what was happening behind those curtains.
The performance video is now presented as a lifesize video projection. It does not have sound which raises the viewer's attention to body language and facial expressions of the "sick" and enhances the theatricality and articificiality of the individual performances. The series of around 90 performances of the "sick" confronts the viewer of the video with a bizarre and comical doctor's or psychologist's consultation hour.