New York

Willie Doherty

Grey Art Gallery

Seemingly emblematic of “the troubles” themselves, the two wall-sized projections that comprised Irish artist Willie Doherty’s video installation, The Only Good One Is A Dead One, 1994, were shown, symbolically, at right angles from each other. Like the still photographs of Northern Ireland captioned with intimations of terror (for which he is better known), Doherty’s video depicts a landscape inscribed with fear.

Both projections are night scenes: one of the city, its darkness irradiated by hot-orange street lamps; the other of the countryside viewed from the driver’s seat of a car, the blue blackness illuminated by white headlight beams. Gears grind and turn signals click, constructing an almost absurd sense of anticipation and drama. The car halts at a stop sign or intersection, seemingly open to attack, before lurching forward toward some unknown destination. Back in the city, we are

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