Abridged 0 – 61: Megan Doherty: Changeling

Megan Doherty is a photographic artist based in Derry, Northern Ireland. She studied photography at the University of Ulster in Belfast before graduating in June 2016. Over the past few years she has been building a body of work exploring Derry’s youth against a hazy urban backdrop.

Her work stands for youth, subculture and freedom:
“The monotony of living in the same small town all your life, surrounded by the same faces every day takes its toll.” she explains “When you allow yourself to get lost in film, music, art, anything really that takes you to that sweet spot in your mind, it’s disappointing to deal with the reality outside of that. Therefore, making work allows me to bring this fictional world to life, to communicate the world I see in my head. Blurring reality and fantasy, essentially.”

Megan’s ongoing project “Stoned in Melanchol” was born from her obsession with freedom. It is a fascinating series starring her friends exploring and turning monotony into a dreamy world full of saturated neon lights.

Her collaboration with Abridged for the Changeling exhibition is the natural collision of two very similar aesthetics. Abridged was born from a dissatisfaction with the world, both in the micro and macro sense. And a great sense of unease as to where we were heading. ‘Changeling’ we see as emblematic of this sinister turn of things. There is a feeling that something isn’t quite right, perhaps even that something is missing though nobody is actually certain what that missing thing is. Reality and the real are no longer the same thing. Reality has in fact replaced the real as the desired state to be in, as it possibly comes with fame and money, or notoriety at least.

“If there is in fact, a heaven and a hell, all we know for sure is that hell will be a viciously overcrowded version of Phoenix — a clean well lighted place full of sunshine and bromides and fast cars where almost everybody seems vaguely happy, except those who know in their hearts what is missing… And being driven slowly and quietly into the kind of terminal craziness that comes with finally understanding that the one thing you want is not there.” (Hunter. S. Thompson)

Abridged aims to publish and exhibit contemporary/experimental poetry plus contemporary art. We encourage poets/artists to investigate the articulation of ‘Abridged’ themes. These themes focus on contemporary concerns in a rapidly changing society. We are offering an alternative and complete integration of poetry, art and design. We experiment continually. We also stray into the exhibition format producing contemporary, innovative and challenging work accompanied by a free publication.

Abridged is supported by the Arts Council of Northern Ireland.