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assembled by: Rachel Pafe

Coming up on the art agenda: the 5th annual FotoWeekDC, a weeklong photography festival featuring 20,000 participants in both the main exhibition at the Warner as well as DC galleries opens this weekend with a big benefit show and more.

Important things to bear in mind:

Now, onto the nitty gritty:

This year, for the first time, they are offering a paid pass. $5 includes: 101 Photos for Press Freedom – Reporters Without Borders/Magnum Photo Agency, 2012 FotoWeekDC International Awards Competition Winners, Global Goods / Local Costs – Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting, Work by PhotoPhilanthropy, Come Together – curated by Alison Zavos/Amanda Gorence (FeatureShoot), Looking at the Land – curated by Andy Adams/Flak Photo, 2012 Uncover/Discover – Regional Curated Exhibition Work by Women Photojournalists of Washington (WPOW), FotoBooks Display and 2012 Thumbnail Exhibition

Too stingy for a pass? Free exhibitions are going on at participating galleries all over DC. Here are some of the highlights.

Love your drag queens?

  • The Drag Illusion, October 31st to November 25th:
  • Touchstone Gallery, FREE
  • An exhibition featuring the photographs of Michael Lang. The artist explores his eight-month period documenting backstage antics of drag queens.

(photo by Michael Lang)

Kind of a contemplator?

  • Revisited: The Inconsistency of Being, October 31st to November 17th
  • Studio Gallery, FREE
  • This show invites ten photographers to reinterpret previous work. The gallery states that the show revolves around time, reinvention, disruption and evolution in order to let the present give past work new meaning.

Experiencing some serious wanderlust?

  • Joshua Cogan’s Tomorrow we Dissappear
  • Sixth and I Synagogue, one night only November 14th
  • In his fifth exhibit opening at Sixth & I, the Emmy award-winning photographer showcases a visual journey through India’s last colony of magicians, acrobats, and puppeteers as part of FotoWeekDC’s 2012 festival. Experience the last remnants of this culture born out of folk art and molded by poverty

photograph by Joshua Cogan

Cross-cultural curiosity?

  • Luces y Sombras, November 9th – March 2nd
  • Mexican Cultural Institute, FREE
  • An exhibition featuring fourteen American photographers who traveled to Mexico to explore the overlap between US and Mexican culture and history.
  • Opening Reception: November 9th, 6:30 pm

In for something edgy?

  • Transitional Bodies/ Cuerpos en Transición, FREE
  • Former residence of the Ambassador of Spain (2801 16th St NW)
  • A show featuring the work of 17 artists from Latin America, Portugal and Spain that challenges stereotypes and present “provocative, modern vanguard photography”.
  • Opening Reception: November 9th: 6:30-8:30 pm (RSVP Required)

Feeling transitional?

  • Upheaval, November 3rd – December 2nd
  • Target Gallery, FREE
  • A juried photography exhibition featuring various artists exploring the theme of upheaval in both a personal and international sense.
  • Opening Reception: November 8th, 6-9 pm: Drinks, live music, DIY button making, Fotobooth


  • An Exploration into Temporary Communities, November 1st – January 1st:
  • The American Institute of Architects Headquarters (AIA), FREE
  • Photographs by Max MacKenzie looking at international temporary shelters/structures.
  • Opening Reception: November 1st, 5-8 pm

Aspiring photographer looking for advice?

  • Portfolio Reviews, November 11th, 9:30 am – 5:30 pm
  • The Goethe Institut, $75
  • Photographers of all levels have the chance to get their work reviewed by professionals from a wide variety of fields. Everyone gets 25 minutes with one or more of the reviewers

let us know what YOU’RE excited to see in the comments