Photographer, sculptor, and video artist Willie Doherty is a witness to political struggle, having seen firsthand Bloody Sunday, a massacre of protesting Northern Irish civil rights agitators by the British Army in 1972. That event was a significant one for Doherty, who credits it as the cornerstone for his career as an artist. Much of Doherty’s work concentrates on evoking or alluding to more than a singular image can portray. Early ventures included text, and his use of text within his carefully chosen titles remains key to understanding his photos and videos. Some of his works include narration, as in his 2007 video Ghost Story, which focuses on a road by a river, alluding to the troubled histories and future possibilities of the oft-mythologized landscape.
Doherty’s work is found in collections worldwide, including the Tate, the Carnegie Museum, the Dallas Museum of Art, MoMA, and Munich’s Sammlung Goetz, among many others. He was the recipient, in 1995, of the Irish Museum of Modern Art's Glen Dimplex Artists Award, and he was nominated for the Turner Prize in 1994 and 2003.