Being Fucked Up

Emily Vey Duke and Cooper Battersby

2001, 10:16 minutes, colour, English


"This ordinary life is hopeless. I have no mission or strong conviction. It seems like everything I find beautiful is crying about this hopelessness, and about the irreducibility of being alone. I wish I was a pervert with something inside me that burned and could never be made manifest. My secrets are so boring. I don't believe in art or socialism. I am bitterly jealous of people who are good or successful. I think romantic passion is by nature fleeting. I lie to my mother. I hate myself..."

So begins the Robot in Duke and Battersby's "Monologue for Robots", part of their ten minute episodic videotape
Being Fucked Up. The work incorporates simple animation and live action sequences to create a portrait of the artist's lives as they struggle with addiction, gender identity and alienation. Ultimately hopeful, Being Fucked Up touches on central human themes through a use of narrative which is unconventional yet intelligible, spontaneous yet precise.

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Critical Writing

Late Capitalist Pathologies and Redemptions: Emily Vey Duke and...
by Irmgard Emmelhainz. C Magazine, Summer 2009, no. 102.
Possibilities of Redemption: Emily Vey Duke and Cooper Battersby...
by Jon Davies. Canadian Art, Fall 2009, v. 26, no. 3.
Artist Pick Up: Emily Vey Duke and Cooper Battersby Wrestle the...
by Kaori Otake. Canadian Art, Winter 2006, v. 23, no. 3.
Border Views: The New Video Linguists
by Unknown. Border Crossings, Aug. 2005, v. 24, no. 3.
Enormous Changes At The Last Minute: The videos of Emily Vey Duke...
by Jason McBride. Cinema Scope, Spring 2005, no. 22. Tokyo: National Museum of Modern Art, 2005.
Generation Next
by Sarah Milroy. The Globe and Mail, May 10, 2003.
Daniel Borins on New Canadian Folk
by Daniel Borins. C Magazine, Winter 2002, no. 72.
Twitching & Scratching: The videos of Emily Vey Duke & Cooper...
by Rebecca Godfrey. C Magazine, Fall 2002, no. 75.
Mixed Company: Art Fags Map Alt Histories
by Ed Halter. The Village Voice, Nov. 20, 2002.