Cecilia Dougherty

Writers Whoo Love Too Much, anthology of short stories
Writers Who Love Too Much, edited by Dodie Bellamy & Kevin Killian, Nightboat Books, NY, 2017

This Just In

I have a short story called Sue in a new anthology called Writers Who Love Too Much, edited by Dodie Bellamy and Kevin Killian, from Nightboat Books.

From contributor’s notes, Writers Who Love Too Much 1977-1997:


Dougherty is a filmmaker from Lancaster, Pennsylvania active in the experimental vido scenes in the Bay Area in the late 80s and 90s, and one of the signal artists of the day.  Her first feature, ‘Grapefruit,’ told the story of the Beatles and their breakup, acted by amateurs, many of them artists, almost all of them women. ‘Grapefruit’ (the title of which borrowed from Yoko Ono’s bestselling nightstand book of exercises) established Dougherty as an artist to watch out for, and when she began her next project in San Francisco, she attracted a largely gay cast of artists and writers and scenesters to bring to life some Bermanesque and tormented passages of her own family life in her next feature, ‘Coal Miner’s Granddaughter.’ With ‘Granddaughter’ star, Leslie Singer, she wrote and directed another biopic, the genderqueer ‘Joe-Joe,’ that took up the story of playwright Joe Orton as seen in the film ‘Prick Up Your Ears,’ and reversed everything in it. In this Pixelvision video, there were two Joes, who are lovers, both of them female, and Joe’s agent, Peggy Ramsay (Vanessa Redgrave in the movie) is played by Kevin Killian, as a man. After that Singer shot a lesbian post-punk variant of the 60s chestnut ‘Valley of the Dolls,’ calling it ‘Taking Back the Dolls’ (1994). During the past few decades, Dougherty has continued her work in experimental film and video, including a series of “portraits” of artists and poets in her circle, including Leslie Scalapino, Eileen Myles, Kevin Killian, Laurie Weeks and Cedar Sigo, while forging ahead in her prose writing.”

Thanks a million, Dodie and Kevin! 

Find Writers Who Love Too Much, from Nightboat Books

or, find it on amazon.com

And from Dennis Cooper’s blog, DC, here’s a nice piece about the book – lots of videos, too, including an excerpt of CLAUDIA (1987) by yours truly:

Please welcome to the world … Dodie Bellamy & Kevin Killian, editors Writers Who Love Too Much: New Narrative Writing 1977-1997 (Nightboat Books)

You can find my book, The Irreducible I: Space, Place, Authenticity, and Change (2013), here. 

The Irreducible I: Space, Place, Authenticity, and Change by Cecilia Dougherty
The Irreducible I: Space, Place, Authenticity, and Change by Cecilia Dougherty, Atropos Press, 2013


More About This Site

Find clips and some complete works on my Videos page, and find two archival print photo series on my Photos page.

The Book Chapters and Articles & Interviews pages have links to texts on PDF. Feel free to download, quote, borrow (always giving me a proper credit, of course).

The Presentations page has text from a 2015 New Museum panel I was on, called “Hall Pass,” about experimental video/video art. More presentations coming up.

You can also check out my longtime (2007 – 2016) photo blog, Quotidian New Yorkwhich is about everyday life, one of my most consistent themes. This was a photo project that I first set up to help reorient me to living in the States after six years as an ex-pat in Ireland. 

I have additional video work and excerpts posted on my  Vimeo channel: https://vimeo.com/ceciliadougherty/channels


I have additional video work and excerpts posted on my  Vimeo channel: https://vimeo.com/ceciliadougherty/channels

I’ve  got an ongoing collaborative project called In-Between Theories with artist-provocateur David Dasharath Kalal. Our first event from this collaboration was a screening and panel discussion at the MIX Queer Experimental Film Festival in Bushwick on Feb 5, 2017.


animated gifs for http://www.inbetweentheories.com
  We’re building our argument against over-theorizing the situation with animated gifs, of course! Thanks to Laurie Weeks for being my muse, now and always.
Click image for a little animation fun with no-theories!





The image above is a video still of Kevin Killian as Francis Dobkin, from my 1991 pixelvision feature, Coal Miner’s Granddaughter. A million thanks, Kevin. You did an amazing job on this film.

Selected videos

[Click full-page icon on videos to expand]


Joe (2016), portrait of Joe Westmoreland

more portraits of  Writers in this series:

  • Laurie (1998), portrait of Laurie Weeks
  • Leslie (1998), portrait of Leslie Scalapino
  • Eileen (2000), portrait of Eileen Myles
  • Kevin & Cedar (2004), portrait of Kevin Killian and Cedar Sigo

Recent work

In A Station, Petals (2010), silent video for nighttime rear-screen projection onto Valencia Street, made for Right Window Gallery, San Francisco


Occupy Wall Street, Redux (2011), silent video for projection against the wall at the drinks bar at Canada Gallery, New York

more recent work


The Fourth Space (2010), large four channel video projection with soundscape titled Moving Parts created by Aleksei R. Stevens for one-person show at Participant, Inc. Gallery, New York

more installations

Early works

My Failure to Assimilate (1995), winner of Best Documentary at the Turin Lesbian and Gay Film Festival

more early works

all works on my Vimeo channel here: https://vimeo.com/ceciliadougherty/channels



Photo above was taken at the Staten Island Ferry Terminal. We (students and faculty)  were waiting for the shuttle to take us to the College of Staten Island while someone sleeps in the corner of the space. Homeless people often use this small space to rest and to sleep. We ignore them, or, we just let them be.

The Irreducible I: Space, Place, Authenticity, and Change

by Cecilia Dougherty
2013, Atropos Press, New York & Dresden

The Irreducible I: Space, Place, Authenticity, and Change examines subjectivity within the shared space of the everyday, engaging an eclectic mix of disciplines from Bruno Latour’s social theories to Barbara Hammer’s filmic possession of the feminine. The writings of Georges Perec and Raoul Vaneigem are tested against the observations of geographer Yi-Fu Tuan, journalist Naomi Klein, and social historian W. E. B. Du Bois, connecting processes by which humans become subjects and non-humans, technologies, and objects become key relational elements in the formation of an authentic space of daily life. Works by Félix Guattari, Kathy Acker, Avital Ronell, Bruno Latour, Gloria Anzaldúa, and Michel de Certeau are brought together, locating pathways of resistance to the narrowing of experience by state and corporate agendas for control. The relational I emerges as a key for human agency, for presenting an everbecoming self to an ever-forming and interconnected global landscape of actual possibility.


From The Irreducible I:

Interstitial space has a vital role in the social realm. It is often unregulated and noncommercial, disconnected from the surveillance of authority and the constraints of scheduling. The term refers to time, occasion, and activity more than to a type of physical space, and it refers to escape as well as discovery. This is a place where time is one’s own. The interstitial spaces of childhood and youth are different from those of adulthood. The term refers to activities such as art making, poetry, lovemaking, daydreaming, and partying – essential activities for the expression of a mutable and continuously forming subjectivity. Interstitial spaces may be tiny zones of autonomy, or the entire milieu of creativity. They may be moments of chaos or moments of creativity.

available on amazon.com or order it through your favorite independent bookshop

more writing >





Cecilia Dougherty, artist, writer

Cecilia Dougherty is an artist working in video and photography based in New York. She has been making experimental videos since 1985, and her themes have been largely about psychology, language, sexuality, outsider interpretations of popular culture, and everyday life.

Her videos have screened extensively in the US and abroad, most recently in 2015 in “Art of the Real” at the Film Society of Lincoln Center, NY, “History of Sexuality” at the New Museum, NY, and “Time/Image” at the Blaffer Art Museum, Houston. Other venues presenting her work in previous years include the New York Film Festival, the Whitney Museum of American Art, Light Industry, Microscope Gallery, Anthology Film Archives, Irish Film Center, Dublin, the Wexner Center, Columbus, Ohio, and many others.

Cecilia Dougherty’s work in moving image extends to animations for iPod and multi-channel video installations.  A current project is an online collaboration with David Dasharath Kalal, In Between Theories (http://www.inbetweentheories.com) that examines the speed of individual and group realization and action against the speed of theoretical discourse. The project has a curatorial aspect as well, which is reflected in the Projects section of the site.

She is a writer as well, and her first book, The Irreducible I: Space, Place, Authenticity, and Change  was published in 2013 by Atropos Press.  The book is based on research into the politics of space and place, specifically a search for ways to find authentic experiences free from the over-reach of corporate culture and pandemic consumerism.