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Device to Root Out Evil (Vancouver, Canada)

Location: Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Date: first exhibited in the 1997

Architect (artist): Dennis Oppenheim

Purpose: Sculpture

More info: It was too hot for New York City; too hot for Stanford University. But a controversial, imposing sculpture by renowned international artist Dennis Oppenheim finally found a public home in laid-back Vancouver.

A country church is seen balancing on it’s steeple, as if it had been lifted by a terrific force and brought to the site as a device or method of rooting out evil forces. Artist website:

(Image credits: papalars)

(Image credits: midnightglory)

(Image credits: pkdon50)

Here is a video I found on youtube about this sculpture.

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26 Responses to “Device to Root Out Evil (Vancouver, Canada)”

  1. Filip Labedz Says:
    December 14th, 2008 at 3:54 am

    this project has been removed from Vancouver, B.C., and is now in Calgary, Alberta.

  2. Galvani Says:
    January 24th, 2009 at 12:53 am


  3. Biz Says:
    January 25th, 2009 at 1:15 pm

    Interesting sculpture indeed. It seems that a lot of work has been invested into this sculpture. For me it seems much more work than in “regular” art sculptures that sometimes seems that are product of mistake than product of intention.

  4. Gail Says:
    April 15th, 2009 at 3:34 am

    Looks pretty anti-God to me. But if thats your statement then thats your choice. Hopefully you will not have to forfeit eternity to make your statement.

  5. Johann Says:
    June 3rd, 2009 at 12:02 pm

    Ugly, ugly, ugly. Made by a Jew?

  6. Donna Says:
    June 3rd, 2009 at 4:08 pm

    It seems to me, as an artist, he has missed the “point”. The CROSS is the device to “Root Out Evil”!

  7. Phil Says:
    June 3rd, 2009 at 9:00 pm

    More anti-religious art. How “tolerant”.

  8. a henneberry Says:
    June 3rd, 2009 at 9:25 pm

    It resembles the upside down state of many of the hierarchy in Canada who are committed to nothing but their status, power and popularity.

  9. Kitty Says:
    June 10th, 2009 at 8:56 pm

    Please consider the possibility that there is no such thing as some invisible guy in the sky.People have the right to freely express themselves through art thankfully bc we do not live in a religious state people like gail have not taken that away form us.So.. the art is cool.

  10. Johann Says:
    June 12th, 2009 at 1:14 pm

    Funny how in the “bad old days” of Christianity, we produced the Renaissance, but in this secular age, crap like this is considered the apotheosis of art.

  11. Rossana Says:
    June 23rd, 2009 at 11:20 pm

    Nice work of art. Nothing is negative in this sculpture, it only shows beauty and power.

  12. Donna Says:
    June 24th, 2009 at 2:37 pm

    It’s AMAZING the arrogance of people to think of “themselves’ as “creative” and authors of creativity…when they cannot produce A SINGLE OBJECT without the “CREATOR” who has placed ALL MATERIALS here for our use. What art has EVER been created without a type of medium already in place??? Who can “create” but GOD???

  13. Marzia Says:
    July 1st, 2009 at 2:46 am

    I got one word….Eyesore!

  14. RR Says:
    July 3rd, 2009 at 7:14 pm

    Wow, Johann, I nominate you for No.1 Douchebag on an architecture site. Why do you want to know if the artist is Jewish? What point are you trying to make?

    As for your second comment: the Renaissance came about when artists and scholars began rediscovering Greek and Roman (pagan) art and allowed themselves to aestheticize the human form in spite of the Church. What you are actually referring to is the Medieval period which produced fine architecture but less than great art (still interesting, though).

    As for the other knee-jerkers, just chill out and think for a second: if an upright church steeple guides the faithful towards Heaven then an inverted steeple that points towards the bowels of the earth must be a “device to root out evil”… duh! Contrary to the comments on this board from supposedly pious people, the artist’s message is delivered not with malice but with playfulness. And even if it were critical of religion, shouldn’t your faith be strong enough for you to shrug it off?

    Which brings us to Donna: according to your logic, if only God can create, then God created this sculpture.

    So what are you complaining about?

  15. Donna Says:
    July 6th, 2009 at 4:00 am

    Dear RR,Perhaps you missed my post about the “CROSS” being the tool to truly “root out evil”. As far as “art” , it is subjective. I think that the Renaissance was initially inspired by God and mentored by the Church. Can you imagine the art of European cathedrals being lost?…the Spiritual IMPACT on the art is indisputable!…And as far as ‘malice’ is concerned…the early CHRISIANS were crucified “UPSIDE DOWN”…NOT ‘playful’…and as far as ‘creativity’ to ‘KITTY’ post…we wouldn’t have the means of expressing art if the “GOD” in the sky didn’t FIRST place the mediums artists use here in this earth!! What can be created from nothing? Which is exactly what we bring and what we take from God’s personal creation. Even an artist needs at least a pencil! Were you born carrying your own sketchpad and pencil? Why can’t you be willing to give the Creator His due credit? Can you “create” a sunset or merely just paint one? I thank God for ANY ability that I may have. I don’t take the credit.”The wisdom of men is foolishness to God.”

  16. Johann Says:
    July 7th, 2009 at 12:19 pm

    Why do I suspect he’s Jewish? Because an anti-Christian attitude predominates among Jews. Because they have been the motive force for the modern spirit of degeneration for hundreds of years. Because they love the senselessness and ugliness of modern “art” and “architecture”. Because of his name. And because he is Jewish:

    Let’s see how “playful” and “tolerant” our Semite brethren are when some intrepid soul produces a piece of art like a picture of Anne Frank in a bottle of urine or a flag of Israel being used as toilet paper by a Palestinian.

  17. douglas Says:
    July 13th, 2009 at 9:23 pm

    it is wonderfull! it rattles so many imprisoned hearts and minds.if it makes people question the priestcraft and their creation of the biggest boogeyman ever downloaded into the psyche of an unsuspecting human populace then” here`s hoping for more statements and expresions like it”

  18. jon Says:
    July 14th, 2009 at 6:00 pm

    What a piece of crap!!!!!

  19. JoAnn Says:
    August 20th, 2009 at 6:23 pm

    Johann save your anti-semitic garbage for your fellow Nazis, skinheads or white supremacists! I’m not sure which of these bigoted hate groups you belong to. I certainly hope you don’t call yourself a Christian!

  20. Johann Says:
    August 24th, 2009 at 2:08 pm

    Make a list of the leading lights of modern “art” and “architecture” and it will read like a page from the Tel Aviv phone book!

  21. Gilgamesh Says:
    August 29th, 2009 at 11:45 pm

    Lighten up people. Most artists create to evoke an emotion, since some love it and some hate it, the artist was successful.

    As for the godbots that sense evil around every corner, does your god need you to defend her? Is she that weak? Let her talk for herself.

  22. Janey Says:
    September 6th, 2009 at 2:35 pm

    So…according to Johann..all the creative smart people in the world are Jewish? He just might be right…oh wait….is that the reason less creative and intelligent people like Johann resent people like this?

  23. tedislayer12 Says:
    September 23rd, 2009 at 1:57 pm

    it’s an amazing house but it’s not really a house just something to look at not live in

  24. Ptoni Says:
    November 7th, 2009 at 7:51 pm

    So donna, r u saying that if I just sit on my ass all day, God will give me the knowledge i need to pass chemistry?

  25. Kirstie Says:
    November 20th, 2009 at 9:40 pm

    I hope non of you call yourselfs Christians Bc of the hate you have towards each other. It’s Hurtful to see people that call themselfs Christians fight about what a sculpture might mean or about others salvation. It’s honestly rediculace.. I’m only 16 and seem to be a more mature Christian than most of you that are.

  26. Donna Says:
    January 11th, 2010 at 3:02 pm

    Dear Ptoni,just now viewing your comment on “asses”. Please check out the Bible…Numbers22:28.Yes,the Lord can even use a donkey to speak if necessary!As far as your studying habits…we are told not to put the Lord to the test…like satan tried to.He has already supplied you with a brain for knowledge.The real key is to at least use it for HIS glory.That is the least we can do out of gratitude.