Exhibition

Oliver Curtis: Volte-Face

19 Sep 2016 – 14 Oct 2016

Regular opening hours

Monday
10:00 – 17:00
Tuesday
10:00 – 17:00
Wednesday
10:00 – 17:00
Thursday
10:00 – 17:00
Friday
10:00 – 17:00
Saturday
Closed
Sunday
Closed

Cost of entry

Free

Royal Geographical Society

London, United Kingdom

Address

Travel Information

  • Tube: South Kensington

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About

On visiting the Pyramids of Giza in Cairo in 2012, Oliver Curtis turned away and looked back in the direction he had come from. What he saw fascinated him so much that he has since made a point of turning his back on some of world's most photographed monuments and historic sites, looking at their counter-views and forgotten faces. 

Taken over a period of four years, Volte-face is an invitation to turn around and see a new aspect of the over-photographed sites of the world - to send our gaze elsewhere and to favour the incidental over the monumental.

Much of what is seen when one turns away may initially seem mundane, the antithesis of the famous construction. These landscapes are in every sense over-looked. They emit a quiet history and a subtle narrative. It is easy to forget that these attractions are also places of work, staffed by janitors, security guards, cleaners and office guards, who have a lack of awe born from daily exposure. 

Curtis feels that despite the landmark not being present in the photograph, the images are still suffused with the aura of the construction. The camera lens effectively acts as a nodal point and, by giving the photograph the title of the unseen partner, this duality becomes a virtue.

Monday-Friday, 10am-6pm
Free

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