The Art of Fugue, 2019
Project Website:

The Art of Fugue: A Polyphonic Instrumental Video Featuring Five Women Working in Trades, 2019
Five-channel Synced HD Video + Textural Stereo Sound
16'16" (seamless loop)
by Emilie Crewe

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The Art of Fugue is a multi-channel video featuring five women working in trade industries. The artwork is a chorus of female performers telling stories through the repetitive actions and movements of skilled work. Edited using the traditional musical structure of a fugue, each screen acts as a singular voice contributing to the artwork as a whole. Arranged and composed using a metronome set to 80 beats per minute and a 4/4 time signature, the framework and timing of each video component is highly intentional.

Similar to a musical composition, the videos harmonize in tone, texture, colour, rhythm and contour. The artwork is polyphonic, meaning there are multiple "melodies" that are simultaneously present. Highlighting women in trades is both an aesthetic decision and a symbolic choice. There is strength and resilience to be found in a performer whose work is in a typically male-dominated field. This contributes to the spirit of the video, with the intention of authentically capturing the tenacity and power of the female voice.

[For reference, The Oxford Dictionary’s definition of a fugue is, a polyphonic composition in which a short melodic theme, the subject, is introduced by one part or voice, and successively taken up by the others and developed by their interweaving.

Five-channel Installation
* Please refer to the project website for installation mockups and technical requirements for exhibitions.


Chelsea Barron - Machinist
Chelsea Barron is a member of the Tsilhqot’in (Chilcotin) Nation and is registered with the Anaham band (Tl’etinqox) which is part of the Tsilhqot’in Nation. When she was young, she played hockey on a boys’ team and fantasized about playing professionally. The work ethic she learned from sports and the examples set by her father and brother, who are both tradespeople, led her to pursue to a career she loves as a Red Seal Machinist.

Mary-Anne Bowcott - Plumber
Mary-Anne Bowcott is a Journeyperson, Plumber and small business owner from Vancouver Island, BC. She is an advocate for Women in Trades, providing support and mentorship to women throughout British Columbia.  Her business, WestCom Plumbing and Heating, employs an all-female crew. Mary-Anne won the Sooke Region Chamber of Commerce Trades and Skilled Labour Excellence Award in 2017, and was the recipient of the Canadian Construction Association’s Person of the Year Award in 2019.

Brandie Doucette - PainterBrandie Doucette is a Métis Citizen born and raised in Vancouver, BC. She studied at the British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) in a number of trades, including Electrical Level 1. Brandie enrolled in a  course for Métis Citizens that was an educational pilot project to train and employ railway conductors.  Between her studies, she worked as a painter for various companies, learning the trade and accepting it as her calling.  It is her belief that, “You do not choose painting, painting chooses you.” After working as a productions manager and learning the business side of the trade, she took a leap of faith and started her own company, FINE HOME PAINTING. When Brandie’s not busy running her business, she enjoys spending time with her 3 children, surfing, camping, reading and watching scary movies together.  Her greatest joy is that of her family.

Meg Iredale - Arborist
Meg Iredale is an Arborist, Sawyer and Carpenter based on Mayne Island, BC. Having been home-schooled, she learned early to follow her interests and to push society’s expectations of what a girl can do! Meg has mostly been taught by mentors on the job, and enjoys taking part in the full process from Tree to Timber to Home. She lives on a farm property with her dog and cats, and helps run a music and art festival (Campbell Bay Music Festival) each June on Mayne.

Katie Stockford - Mechanic
Katie Stockford is an automotive mechanic based in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. She did some of her training in the Kootenays at Selkirk College. Her small shop, Neighbourhood Automotive, provides excellent customer service to members of the community. She enjoys servicing vehicles and is always eager to get people back up and running. She is passionate about 4x4ing and dirt biking!

Production Assistance:

Sebnem Ozpeta
Sebnem Ozpeta is a Vancouver-based visual artist, video editor, and videographer. She studied graphic design in Turkey, where she was born and raised. She also completed the digital film program at The Art Institute of Vancouver. She has produced short films and video installations that have been screened and exhibited in festivals in Europe, Canada and Turkey.


Sebnem Ozpeta
Emilie Crewe

Video + Sound Editing:

Emilie Crewe

Equipment + Technical Support:

VIVO Media Arts Centre, Vancouver, BC

Special thanks to Joey Carr, Annik Gaudet and Erin Nixon

We acknowledge the support of the Canada Council for the Arts.
Nous remercions le Conseil des arts du Canada de son soutien.