5 February - 13 April 2013
Daniel Crook’s A garden of parallel paths 2012 splices together tracking shots of Melbourne laneways, creating a seamless ambulatory gaze from narrow slices of urban space. Originally commissioned for Parallel Collisions: 2012 Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art, Crooks describes the work as ‘an attempt to exert absolute control over the camera – to take the perfect precision of the computer-based world and to impose that on a reality that is unpredictable, imprecise and otherwise difficult to control’.
The laneways themselves are like the second hand of a clock in the hierarchy of Melbourne’s urban plan, running between the streets that in turn lead into the broad avenues of the modern city, an integral part of the servicing and sanitisation of urban life as it was dreamed by nineteenth-century surveyors such as Robert Hoddle. Crooks avoids Melbourne’s most recognisable lanes, the ones that spill over with café tables or highly-coloured graffiti – and that are the ubiquitous feature of the city’s tourism campaigns – in favour of anonymous ones from both the city centre and its inner suburbs that better represent a whole rather than a particular experience of the city’s narrowest spaces.