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After explorations in photographing people painted as animals (in 2009) and heavily massaged landscape images mounted on wooden boxes (in 2011), Alexander Vasiljev now turns to a more straightforward project in his exhibit at Watergate Gallery and Frame Design: documenting the land and people of Nepal.

Vasiljev’s color works are landscapes; some have insufficient grain for their size, but others offer pleasing depictions of bucolic

vistas dotted by the occasional sapphire-hued pagoda. Vasiljev’s black-and-white images are all close-up portraits of Nepalese subjects—-an array of wrinkled faces, turbans, face paint, nose jewelry and, most memorably, long, curlicued beards that lose all shades of gray in Vasiljev’s high-contrast technique. The most notable image in either format, however, is a color photograph of a panoply of flapping flags (top), striking for its variety of airy, translucent hues.

Through Nov. 27 at Watergate Gallery and Frame Design, 2552 Virginia Avenue, NW. Mon-Fri 10-6, Sat 12-5.