Ian Potter Moving Image Commission: Phantom Ride

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About the work

Taking as a starting point films such as the Lumiere Brother’s 'Leaving Jerusalem by Railway' (1896), regarded today as the first ever tracking shot, Crooks’ installation creates a continuous, seamless tracking shot that moves the viewer through a fragmented reality, constructed from a collage of Australian railways.

By manipulating digital footage, Crooks creates still and moving images that compel us to question our understanding of time.

Using sophisticated editing and compositing techniques to produce what could be new modes of visual perception, his works encourage us to re-examine our experience of reality.

Phantom Ride is inspired by a history of cinema and, in particular, the way in which trains have been employed as an extension of the camera.

The work references the ‘phantom rides’ of early cinema, a genre of film popular in Britain and the United States in the early 1900s.

Pre-dating narrative features, these short films showed the progress of a vehicle, usually a train, moving forward by mounting a camera on its front.

About the creator

Daniel Crooks, one of the most renowned contemporary artists in Australia, is a Melbourne-based artist working across digital video, photography, sculpture and installation.

More about Daniel Crooks