Chris Dorley-Brown: BBC in the East End 1958-1973

When he took on a Creative Archive placement, artist Chris Dorley-Brown became fully ‘embedded’ in the BBC – with a staff pass, a desk and support from archive and legal staff.

Chris decided to focus on a specific geographical area – the East End of London – and explore its representation in the BBC’s programme output. This study of the BBC’s East End could become a model for others to follow elsewhere.

He tapped into the output of Lime Grove, the famous current affairs studio, and uncovered some of the very first ‘open access’ projects set in the East End.

Chris tracked down both producers and participants in documentaries made in the late 1960s and early 1970s. By recreating interviews and locations he tapped into their emotional resonance, and at the same time offered key questions about representation and motivation.

Chris’s tip:

“The more specific you are, the more general the work will be.”

Chris talks about his placement with the BBC

An extract from BBC in the East End

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