The cow track of our incessant art wanderings led us up a hill, along a dale and then to the Australian Centre for Photography where they have photographic art and the glummest looking gallery assistants the world has ever known. Are they volunteers? Are they getting paid? Or not paid enough to deal with the public? Next time you’re in there, give them a sweet, they look like they need some cheering up.
Trent Parke‘s show Minutes To Midnight, a journal of a two year, ’round-the-country road trip with his missus Narelle Autio is in it last weeks (until February 20). It’s a great show and demonstrates why the photographer is now a member of that august body Magnum Photos. With an eye for the perfect moment combined with an artful sense of composition, Parke’s work’s are a stunning evocation of how this country really is. The works portray a place on the edge of civilisation, brutally violent and beautiful.
We’ve noted how the ACP is really into theatrical shows with music, curtains and moody lighting being pretty much standard nowadays. The Parke show is much in that vein with black walls, sound effects and numbers so small you can’t make them out. In this instance, however, it all works, creating an Easter Show feel to the whole place, as though the exhibition was taking place in Sideshow Alley, or perhaps some interactive exhibit at the Australian Museum.