The exhibit is a sort of a time capsule of architecture, beginning at least 20,000 years ago with the rock paintings of Nawarla Gabarnmang in Northern Territory, Australia, to the more modern Burj Khalifa, Dubai.

Hanuman Temple, Hampi, India (2006)
Hanuman Temple, Hampi, India (2006) © John Gollilngs

India and Hampi feature prominently in the exhibition which has 67 photos. His recent project is about photographing all the step wells of India. So far, he has documented 125 of them. “My effort has always been to make a building stand out. I wish to take the single most iconic picture of the said monument. Early on, when you photographed Indian temples, on black and white film, the colours of the stone and the blue sky would all be of the same density. You got this muddy look, so I started photographing at night, to make the colours stand out. I used my work in India to photograph modern architecture,” he says.

Gollings is a self-taught photographer, who fell in love with photography when he was only nine. He progressed to the dark room at 11. Post learning the ropes of the artform, he straddled the world of glamour and tried his hand on fashion and advertising photography before embarking on this anthropological study and documentation of architecture. “I studied architecture at Melbourne University. Advertising was a chance thing. I was asked to assist Norman Parkinson’s assistant, the famous London photographer. I picked up some very big accounts, but as my contemporaries from architectural school were making buildings, I became their go-to photographer,” says Gollings.