Willie Doherty: HOME

Cat. Villa Merkel Städtische Galerie Esslingen

Exhibition catalogue,  Andreas Baur
texts (German/English) by Andreas Baur, Clea Laade and Anka Wenzel
112 p with 80 coloured illustrations
220 x 300 mm, hardcover

ISBN 978-3-86442-178-5

29,80 €

The action-docudrama by Willie Doherty

HOME (2016) is the latest video installation by Willie Doherty, documenta participant in 2012 and representative for Ireland at the Venice Biennale in 2007. In quite a subtle way, Willie Doherty has always reflected the precarious political situation in Northern Ireland while focusing on individual sensitivities fluctuating between security and threat, vulnerability and integrity – just as he now essentially questions the context of migration and social affiliation. HOME revolves around the refugee issue, while the two video works »The Amnesiac« (2014) and »Buried« (2009) combine aspects of memory with the desire for individual integrity. The installation »Remains« (2013) addresses the notion of collective memory, by directing attention to the practice of kneecapping adopted by three generations of the IRA, punishing actual or alleged dissidents or traitors by shooting their kneecaps. Challenging the imaginative powers of the viewer, the videos are always accompanied by mostly documentary photographs. Between the two polar opposites of authenticity and fiction, Willie Doherty examines conditions of the cinematic while skillfully playing with the genres of action movie, film d’auteur and documentary. His imaging technique resembles that of a crime story: It enhances the seemingly indistinguishable nature of a given threat and indiscriminate fear; narrative structures and their interpretations remain largely open. Willie Doherty’s photographs and videos therefore invite you to keep an open mind in the face of images, which you would otherwise meet with utmost suspicion.

Villa Merkel Städtische Galerien Esslingen, 14/2–24/4/2016