Do you know D.C.?
Get our free newsletter to stay in the know about local D.C.
TO APRIL 28
We all love plastic toys. Some—the ones stowed in our bedside drawers—are take-offs on things that point and shoot. Others really do point and shoot: toy cameras like Hong Kong-ese Dianas and Chinese Holgas. Adored by shutterbugs with Dadaist leanings, plastic cameras not only render focus and f-stops irrelevant, but also produce bizarre effects through light leaks and balky film-advance mechanisms. Although Dianas are no longer in production, you can still find them on the Internet or at the fleas—or you can buy a Nickelodeon Photo Blaster at Toys “R” Us—for around 25 bucks a pop. But just because they’re cheap doesn’t mean they’re tawdry: In a one-room show at Arlington’s Black & White photo studio, a group of local photographers work their little cameras’ distortions to evocative effect. Like many works in the show, Adam Auel’s untitled view of a bell dangling from a wooden dock has the olde worlde style of a daguerreotype: Shallow depth of field and a searing white light leaking in from above zap his lakeside scene straight into the 19th century. The pool of black ringing the edges of Matthew Girard’s Wildwood, N.J., a hazy image of a kid on a swing set, looks like a melancholy postcard from childhood past. And in Swirl, Vickie Fruehauf’s Holga-snapped view of bubbling seafoam, the surf looks like something else made for kiddie consumption—delicate, billowy cotton candy. (Fruehauf’s Scott’s Run is pictured.) On view from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday to Friday, to Friday, April 28, at Black & White, 1916 Wilson Blvd., Suite 201, Arlington. Free. (703) 525-1922. (Jessica Dawson)