Beauty Plus Pity

Emily Vey Duke, Cooper Battersby

This video is no longer available

Emily Vey Duke and Cooper Battersby, Beauty Plus Pity (still), 2009.

e-flux presents Me, You, and Everyone We Know Beauty Plus Pity
Emily Vey Duke, Cooper Battersby

14 Minutes
Courtesy of Vtape, Toronto

Repeat screening Wednesday, August 18, 2021

Join us on e-flux Video & Film for an online screening of Emily Vey Duke and Cooper Battersby’s Beauty Plus Pity (2009), streaming from Wednesday, July 21 through Tuesday, August 3, 2021.

Combining ditties, stories, cartoons, scavenged video footage, and the installation of taxidermied animals and other sculptural elements, Beauty Plus Pity investigates the perverse ethical, emotional, and existential relationships among adults, children, animals, and God. Syracuse-based Canadian artists Emily Vey Duke & Cooper Battersby suggest that generational legacies and natural cycles both comfort us with their promise of continuity and entrap us in destructive patterns. They are fascinated by how redemption can sprout from the present just as a tree sprouts from a seed. Reciting Philip Larkin’s poem about parental dysfunction, “This Be The Verse,” they urge us to “get out as early as you can” from our parents’ grasp “and don’t have any kids yourself.” Although children are not good, the narrator claims, they contain the potential for goodness.

Beauty Plus Pity is presented here as one of five films in Part Three | Interrelational Arrangements (Interdependency and Survival), the third of four programs in the online series Me, You, and Everyone We Know: Interrelationality, Alterity, Globalization programmed by Irmgard Emmelhainz for e-flux Video & Film. The series will run in four thematic parts from June 23 through August 18, 2021. Each part will include a two-week group screening, and a live discussion.

For more information, contact program [​at​] e-flux.com.

Religion & Spirituality, Film
Animation & Cartoons, Animals, Childhood & Youth, Family, Motherhood and Reproduction, Human - Nonhuman Relations
Return to Part Three | Interrelational Arrangements (Interdependency and Survival)

Emily Vey Duke & Cooper Battersby have been working collaboratively since 1994 in printed matter, installation, new media, curation, and sound, with their primary practice single-channel video.


e-flux announcements are emailed press releases for art exhibitions from all over the world.

Agenda delivers news from galleries, art spaces, and publications, while Criticism publishes reviews of exhibitions and books.

Architecture announcements cover current architecture and design projects, symposia, exhibitions, and publications from all over the world.

Film announcements are newsletters about screenings, film festivals, and exhibitions of moving image.

Education announces academic employment opportunities, calls for applications, symposia, publications, exhibitions, and educational programs.

Sign up to receive information about events organized by e-flux at e-flux Screening Room, Bar Laika, or elsewhere.

I have read e-flux’s privacy policy and agree that e-flux may send me announcements to the email address entered above and that my data will be processed for this purpose in accordance with e-flux’s privacy policy*

Thank you for your interest in e-flux. Check your inbox to confirm your subscription.