From Cecile Oreste at danceDC
Although photographer Mark Parascandola has lived in the D.C. area for more than 20 years, he rarely takes pictures in the District. Most of his photography is inspired by his travels to Chile, Miami, China and his mother’s homeland of Spain. Currently, he is working on a project photographing movie sets left over from the so-called Spaghetti Westerns filmed in Almeria in the 1960s and 1970s. These films include classics such as El Condor and The Good, The Bad and The Ugly.
Parascandola enjoys taking pictures that tell the narrative of a place rather than the story of an individual or group of people. Consequently, much of his work focuses on the theme of abandoned architecture/buildings and transitional spaces.
“People think of architecture as being static or permanent, but it changes over time depending on who takes over the space and how it is affected by the surrounding environment,” Parascandola said.
In addition to his current film set project, his photographs of Miami Marine Stadium and the Carabanchel Prison in Madrid also explore this concept of abandoned architecture. After the structures were no longer in use, both were taken over by graffiti artists and transformed into an impromptu gallery of art. Carabanchel Prison has been torn down since Parascandola last photographed the structure and Miami Marine Stadium is endangered as well, but his images remain a record of how the structures once were.
From Cecile Oreste at danceDC
The familiar saying, “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure,” is particularly relevant to Mid City Artist Chuck Baxter. For more than 15 years, the Shaw resident has created works of art from objects found in the alleys of D.C. Basketballs, ties, yogurt containers, vodka bottles, lighters and car air fresheners have all been artistic inspiration to the area’s “foremost collector of gutter gifts.”
Whether you view his work as trash or treasure, Baxter has had great success exhibiting in the area. He has shown his work at Artomatic, Arts on Foot, Touchstone Gallery, Studio Gallery, Mid City Caffe and the 17th Street Festival, among others. Currently, he is part of a group show, “Social Network in the Neighborhood,” with 11 other Mid City Artists at DC Loft Gallery on 14th Street NW.
When it comes to his artistic process, Baxter admits that there is not much planning involved. The approach may differ for each piece, but the result is always something unique.
“I rarely have a preconceived notion of what I’m going to do,” he said. “I usually look at the materials and think about what I can do with them. Sometimes it comes to me. Sometimes I manipulate the material.”
We went to Artomatic on Friday and enjoyed it–it’s a loooooot of art. We started at the top and worked our way down, but only saw four floors. But, it’s a great chance to see the work of local artists in a number of different mediums. There are also music performances and other stuff to do; here is the roundup for this final weekend of events at Artomatic.