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The third annual juried exhibition at D.C.’s Leica Store is titled “Unforgettable.” This label is a bit exaggerated—the works in the exhibit are hit and miss—but there are still a smattering of worthy images.
Vince Lupo offers a trio of divergent images. One is a landscape photograph of a tumbledown house on the plains flanked by a pair of denuded trees; it’s rendered in impressively eerie black-and-white, though the style veers a bit too closely to the work of Maxwell MacKenzie. Another is a portrait of a seemingly lonely older man on a couch (a subject echoed in an image by Nicholas Pinto showing a scared-looking man cautiously entering a room whose walls are scarred by chipped paint). A third by Lupo shows the back of a woman standing in a church and gazing at a sculpture on the altar whose robe echoes the outline of her own draped jacket.
Vincent Ricardel’s selection of images is also impressively diverse: A mother sitting in a leafy yard, oddly distanced from her child in a stroller; a swimmer’s joyfully upturned legs in the surf; and a male figure set against such a strong backlight that its outline morphs into a virtual a comic-book character.
In one image of local interest, Martin Koubek captures the Washington Monument just as it’s being swarmed by a Hitchcockian swirl of birds, while Jeff Hughes offers a puzzling photograph of a prone female figure resting on an oddly textured, seemingly aqueous surface.
Perhaps the exhibit’s most impressive work is by Alex Szopa. In one image, Szopa photographs several laborers from above, set against the dusty, rubble-strewn, intriguingly textured surface they are clearing. In the other image, Szopa offers a Sebastião Salgado-style tableau that features the backs of three figures gazing off toward a distant valley of houses, all under a dramatic sky of thick clouds cut by sunbeams. Szopa’s images come closest to living up to the exhibit’s title.
At the D.C. Leica Store, 977 F St. NW, Washington, D.C., Sun 12-5 p.m., Mon-Wed 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Thu-Fri 10 a.m.-7 p.m., Sat 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
Photo by Vincent Ricardel.