As a kid growing up in Los Angeles, Cynthia Connolly watched art-deco signs whiz by from the backseat of her mother’s car. Her exhibit at Civilian Art Projects captures the years she later spent tracking down fascinating signs, traveling to places in Arizona, Louisiana, New York, West Virginia, and the D.C. area. Her D.C. signs—Bloomingdale Liquor, Yellow Cab—are probably familiar sights to any conscious resident, but they’re intriguing even without the local references. Her images, ringed with a simple black frame, always point skyward, pairing the aging, archaic, scaffold-supported signs with almost heavenly views of the sky. Connolly’s images aren’t infused with the wittiness of Robert Cottingham’s photorealistic paintings of old neon signs or the pathos that pervades Camilo Jose Vergara’s photographs of decaying Americana, but they do justice to bygone architectural details that are at once derelict and grand.
“Letters On Top of Buildings” is on view 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays at Civilian Art Projects, 1019 7th St. NW. Free. civilianartprojects.com. (202) 607-3804.