City Paper is not for tourists
“Washington Realism” is billed, accurately, as an exhibit in which the artists ignore the glitz and glam of the local political scene. It could also be said that it ignores Washington, D.C. entirely. The 10 artists included in the exhibit are all D.C.-based, but you wouldn’t know it from some of the work. The late Manon Cleary opens the show with tender portrayals of cloud-streaked skies; Fred Folsom offers a dainty, bucolic landscape that couldn’t contrast more starkly with the city’s streets; Joe White offers a glimpse of urban façades rendered in Miami-flavored pinks, yellows, and greens. But there are standouts. Trevor Young returns to subject matter he’s visited successfully in the past—an empty parking-attendant booth at night, a jet plane parked amid the broad, negative space of an airport tarmac. Gregory Thielker’s rural-road landscapes are intriguing, particularly his view at dusk from the windshield of a moving car. And Martin Kotler produces a wonderful pair of Ashcan School-worthy portrayals of train yards, crowned by intricately reproduced jumbles of overhead power lines. “Washington Realism” is on view 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Mondays–Fridays to April 27 at Carroll Square Gallery, 975 F St. NW. (202) 347-7978. carrollsquare.com.