The series, taken over a period of four years, is called ‘Volte-face’ by British photographer Oliver Curtis, and it consists of pictures taken while pointing the camera in the opposite side, instead of aiming at the landmark. With a totally different perspective in mind, he favours the incidental over the monumental, and his inspiration for this came to him in 2012 when Curtis was visiting the Pyramids of Giza. He turned around and looked in the direction he came from, and was so fascinated by what he saw that from then on, he has never forgotten to turn around at some of world’s most photographed historic sites and monuments. And, that’s how Volte-face was born. He has travelled the globe, and is the creator of this series which is immensely popular despite the fact that none of the pictures have the popular landmarks they were taken at!
He told Creative Boom, “After walking around the base of the tomb I found myself looking back out in the direction I had arrived from, with the pyramid behind me. Intersecting the horizon under a veil of smog lay the city of Giza. Immediately in front of me and under my feet, the sand of the desert was adorned with an assortment of human detritus; litter, pieces of rusted metal, a large rubber washer and a torn hessian sack... I found this visual sandwich of contrasting colour, texture and form intriguing not simply for the photograph it made but also because of the oddness of my position; standing at one of the great wonders of the world facing the ‘wrong’ way."
Let's look at his work to see how it differs from the conventional pictures taken by photographers all over the world.
1) Taj Mahal, Agra, India
2) Christ The Redeemer, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
3) Wailing Wall, Jerusalem, Israel
4) Mona Lisa, The Louvre, Paris
5) St. Mark's Square, Venice, Italy
6) Hollywood Sign, Los Angeles, USA
7) Great Wall of China, Mutianyu, China
8) Reichstag, Berlin, Germany
9) Angel of Independence, Mexico City, Mexico
10) Partheneon, Athens, Greece
11) White House, Washington D.C., USA
12) Stonehenge, Wiltshire, United Kingdom
13) Eiffel Tower, Paris, France
14) St. Peter's Basilica, Vatican City, Vatican
15) Monument of Democracy, Bangkok, Thailand
16) La Moneda Palace, Santiago, Chile
17) Buckingham Palace, London, United Kingdom
18) Colosseum, Rome, Italy
Check out more of his photos on his website.