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True Nature by Willie Doherty


"True Nature consists of five separate but related video sequences, which are shown simultaneously. The videos are projected onto five 3x4 metre free-standing screens made with rear projection material, allowing the image to be viewed from both sides. The screens are installed in a configuration where they stand at various angles to each other, enabling the viewer to see more than one sequence at any time and to move freely between the screens. A soundtrack accompanies each video sequence and the speakers are fixed to the wall at head height near to each screen.

The video footage and audio material for "True Nature" was recorded in Chicago in August and November 1998 and in Ireland in January 1999. The Chicago video footage was recorded in the downtown area, in neighbourhoods, which were identified to the artist as 'Irish' and on public transport to and from these areas and the International Airport. At the same time the artist conducted a number of interviews with members of the Irish-American community . The criteria for the interviewees were that they should be second or third generation Irish and that they should never have visited Ireland. The interviews concentrated on their views and perceptions about Ireland and how these impressions were shaped through family stories, news coverage, cinema etc.
The video footage recorded in Ireland was shot in response to the Chicago interviews and attempted to 'find' some of the places and types of landscape described in them.

Each video sequence is compiled from this material in a non-linear and fragmentary manner where images, ambient sounds and voices are juxtaposed. This is further complicated by the inclusion of the voice of an Irish actor whose role is more indeterminate as he muses over the position of the emigrant."
Willie Doherty
Artist:Willie Doherty
Artwork type:video installation
Style/Period:Postmodern
Material:5 DVDs, colour, sound, 30 mins (10 minutes repeated continuously)
Measurements:Dimensions variable
Technique:digital video
Date:1999
Location:Collection of Guggenheim Museum, New York
Culture:Irish
Rights owner:Willie Doherty
Rights status:UK HE use only
Institution:University of Ulster

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Willie Doherty 1998

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