16 May 2014

Carabanchel Photography Book Release Reception and Artist Talk


Wednesday, June 4, 6:30 – 8:30 PM, Free
Studio 1469, 1469 Harvard St NW – REAR (Columbia Heights Metro)

(Washington, DC) – Artist Mark Parascandola releases his first photography book Carabanchel on Wednesday, June 4 at Studio 1469. Carabanchel spotlights Parascandola’s photography of the defunct prison that once jailed Spain’s most notorious political prisoners for the greater part of the 20th Century. The event is free and open to the public.

Parascandola’s Carabanchel book documents the former prison, its history and nearby community. Parascandola visited the Carabanchel site in October 2008, as a fierce debate over the future of the prison grew. Unknown then to the photographer and the community, the prison was to be demolished a few weeks later. Carabanchel gives audiences a view into the famous prison’s unique architecture as it was altered by Spanish graffiti artists.

“The space was transformed into an immense, colorful museum of illicit street art, a defiant rejection of the repressive regime that created the prison,” writes Parascandola, whose prose accompany his images. “Today, the Carabanchel Prison, and the site on which it sits, is emblematic, more than any other location in the country, of both Spain’s turbulent past and persistent tensions between liberty and security.”

The artist’s photography is characterized by studies of architecture and color. While the subject is deeply political, Parascandola’s artwork adds a new dimensions of light and beauty. Capturing a moment in time – that of urban destruction, public artwork and a symbol of oppression, Parascandola’s images show humanity’s struggle to create meaning in place.

Copies of the book will be available for $40 at the event. Afterwards, the book will be available via for $45.

Mark lives and works in the U Street neighborhood of Washington, DC. A PhD epidemiologist by training, he uses photography to explore patterns of movement in human populations, focusing on architecture as evidence of often-invisible social, environmental and economic processes.
Mark has family roots in the desert landscape of Almería, Spain, and he is currently documenting the remains of old movie sets constructed in the region during the 1960s and 1970s. His exhibit “Once Upon a Time in Almería” was recently on view at the Embassy of Spain in Washington, DC and the Miami Public Library.
His work has been featured at various galleries in Washington, DC and at Galería Acanto in Almeria, Spain and appears in the DC Art Bank and numerous individual collections.

Studio 1469 ( is a newly constructed studio, designed and created with multi- disciplinary uses in mind. The space is both a blank slate and a ready to use opportunity for rehearsal, instruction and creation. Gallery style lighting along with abundant natural light, combined with reinforced soundproof walls enables both choir or painter, ensemble or shutterbug to make things happen within this secluded yet wonderfully situated building. Over a century old, originally built as stables and storage for the neighborhood grocer, Studio 1469 emerges again to serve the community, now via artists, performers, thespians & musicians within the District and beyond. Studio 1469 is located just northeast of the intersection of 15th and Harvard Street NW, adjacent to the nexus of Adams Morgan, Mt. Pleasant and Columbia Heights, conveniently 2.5 blocks from the Green & Yellow line Columbia Heights Metro.

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gina herrmann
10 years ago

HI Mark

Will you be presenting this book on the west coast or in NYC?

Gina Herrmann
Professor of Spanish
University of Oregon