VSL:WEB // See the goofiest grand tour ever

We’ve all seen (and/or attempted) the trick photograph in which Stonehenge or the Eiffel Tower magically rests in the palm of someone’s hand. The London-born, Berlin-based photographer Michael Hughes has taken that one step further. His sweet, playful snapshot album unfolds like “Around the World in 80 Tchotchkes” — with some of the most recognizable landmarks on the planet hiding behind their handheld toy replicas in the foreground.

Hughes’s project, begun in 1999, has a curious effect: When something like Berlin’s Victory column is concealed behind a coffee mug bearing its likeness, the monument becomes, strangely, more monumental. Historical moments are also re-created, as when a Titanic refrigerator magnet is photographed at the ship’s last port of call. And luckily for us, Hughes had a copy of Abbey Road when he stood before its famous crosswalk. A particular favorite of ours shows a brass figure of Don Quixote valiantly tilting at windmills south of Madrid.

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