Ma Chere Amie

Ruthann Lee and Isabelle Kim

2010, 04:00 minutes, colour, English


How does a mother conceive of desire and how does society desire motherhood? Ma Chère Amie depicts the everyday realities and fantasies of a young Korean-French-Canadian mother living in Toronto. Possibly depressed, she drinks and smokes now and again. The mother plays with her infant son while grieving the death of her close friend to postpartum depression. Fiercely independent, the mother dreams of escaping, while at work her mind is occupied with domestic fantasies. She feels guilty about not feeling guilty about daycare. This short, experimental music video draws on silent cinéma vérité-like performance to explore the themes of motherhood, loss, and desire.

The video also experiments with the use of costumes and editing techniques to break down the distinction between reality and fantasy and create an ambiguous picture of motherhood that simultaneously disrupts stereotypes while inviting the audience to judge.

Ma Chère Amie is dedicated to the memory of the woman's close friend Hadiza, who lived in Niger. Hadiza committed suicide when her daughter was 9 months old. The title of the video is in French in honour of the language shared between these two mothers.

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