Located inside Ridley Road Market in Dalston, East London, Doomed gallery is independent and created for young artists to DIY, share and have fun. It was the exhibition Zines of The World that brought Doomed on Underground’s radar: INTO THE DIRT, our Punk Zine reimagined for Grime will join the group soon. Sharing the same Punk spirits, Underground went down to Doomed on the opening night, had a talk with Ken and Matt about their exhibitions and inspirations.
How did this cool independent space all start?
Doomed Gallery was started about 5 years ago by Ken Flaherty. The space was originally Ken’s live/work studio, and while trying to find places to exhibit his own work he decided to make his studio space into a gallery. Since then Doomed has exhibited over 300 photographers and visual artists.
When did you firstly get involved in this gallery?
I myself came into the gallery about 2/3 years ago to work with Ken and bring in more of the DIY and zine scene that I have been a part of and working with for the last 8 years. I did a few exhibitions here back in 2012 and just loved the space and the ethos behind it.
The name Doomed gallery works. What’s the meaning behind it?
The name came when Ken and a friend of his where coming up with names for the gallery and Kens partner said, “what’s the point, it’s Doomed anyway”. So that’s where it came from. It just fits so well with what Ken wanted to convey as a gallery/project space.
How would you define Doomed gallery in a couple of sentences?
DIY; UNDERGROUND; APOCALYPTIC; ART BUNKER
It seems like the exhibitions at Doomed are in various types. How do you choose the artists?
As a gallery we wanted to focus on photography. Ken and myself both work as photographers. This has progressed in to zines, video work and mix media. As a gallery we really want to support DIY culture so the gallery has really grown with what we exhibit. We try to choose people that fit with the ethos of the gallery and try to make it a space that people feel they can do what they want.
All of your exhibits are your favourites I am sure, but which one sticks out in particular?
We have had so many great shows. I guess the New Japanese photography exhibition we did last year was one of the best. It was our first time we had a line down the street. The work was amazing and it was listed at number 13 in the best exhibitions of the year by BJP.
DIY or Die. It was the exhibition Zines of The World that brought Doomed on our radar. Tell us more about it? Apart from London and Poland, any other places in the future?
I have been working with submissions exhibitions through my project the Photocopy club. Ken and myself wanted to come up with a new submission project and we thought it would be great to do a big zine show. There are so many amazing zines being made all over the world and the works we received were amazing. We had work come in from all over. In the end we had 360 zines submitted for the London exhibition. The idea is to keep the collection travelling to other countries and for the collection to keep growing. We hope to next take it out to the States and Canada.
Any upcoming exhibition or future plans you want to share with our readers?
We are closing for Christmas but will be back in the New Year with some great new exhibitions. Lots more talks, workshops and open submission projects. Keep an eye on our Instagram and website for all the details of up and coming shows.
Self publishing and now Doomed Radio. Anything you want to achieve in the future?
The radio we hope to expand and get more interviews going on there. I also plan to start work on a documentary about Doomed and the people that come and exhibit here.
Underground inspires and is inspired by British subculture, both contemporary and from before. I found many exhibitions of yours are sub culture related. Is there a sub-culture that inspires you? Or which subculture do you identify with the most?
I grew up on Punk music. Punk and DIY culture is everything to me. VIVE LA DOOMED.
Our ongoing series of reports on emerging and established artists with close-up Q&As, gallery reports and exhibition reviews, with a special emphasis on supporting diversity in art, women in art and the independent art scene.
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