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Rod Dickinson in collaboration
with Tom McCarthy

Western Front and Artspeak
Vancouver BC Nov 26-Jan 14, 2006

Rod Dickinson - Greenwich Degree Zero
Rod Dickinson, Greenwich Degree Zero (2005), video still [Western Front and Artspeak, Vancouver BC, Nov 26-Jan 14]

Greenwich Degree Zero by British artist Rod Dickinson in collaboration with writer Tom McCarthy is the third major exhibit of The Set Project currently running at the Western Front and Artspeak. The Set Project, curated by Lorna Brown and Jonathan Middleton, is a series of exhibitions, performances and artist talks supported by the Vancouver Public Library and the British Council. It is being held in conjunction with the Live Biennial and the British Council’s “UK Today” series. Greenwich Degree Zero follows an exhibit by Judy Radul and Geoffrey Farmer at Artspeak (through November 26).

Rod Dickinson is a lecturer on Cultural and Media Studies in England and a multimedia artist. He places real and imagined historical events in theatrical context to explore boundaries between performer and audience, and to examine the ways in which real occurrences, historical accounts and the presentation of history as theatre can be confounded. Earlier work examined the phenomenon of charisma and authority in leadership.

Greenwich Degree Zero imagines Martial Bourdin’s attack on the Greenwich Observatory as a successful one, and presents documentation to describe a fictitious outcome. Dickinson’s work is an elaborate, semi-historical assemblage of documents and “archival” film footage that re-frames the 1894 incident of sabotage. Materials include an invented archive of newspaper articles, pamphlets and police files, with video interviews by fake historians and contemporary explosives experts.


Mia Johnson

 Wed, Nov 2, 2005