Mark Power likes to pretend. In his photographs he has imagined the life of movie star Rita Hayworth and created fictional photo albums for made-up characters. In his latest series, "Fibonacci's Face," he reinvents himself as a photographer with an obsession with numbers. A survey of his work is on display at the Kathleen Ewing Gallery. The exhibit represents a kind of farewell: After 27 years, Power retired last spring from teaching at the Corcoran School of Art. The founder of Washington's first photography gallery, the long-defunct Icon, Power has sold his family's Leesburg farm and is moving to England, where his wife has family. Strangely, there is another well-known photographer there named Mark Power. "I may use another name. It could be kind of fun," says Power, 61. "I could start all over again." The exhibit at Ewing's gallery is a mini-retrospective of Power's career. A grid from his "Haunted" series hangs in the front room. The images are dark, developed with the negative borders still intact. Ku Klux Klan members march down a deserted street in one photograph, while another displays the bald pate of a young female model. Each photograph has "some visible presence to it that's not immediately apparent," says Power. Of the inclusion of a seemingly domestic image of his wife and her mother at the kitchen table, Power says "an interaction between mother and daughter is filled with haunting things." Throughout the years Power has captured many images of his friends and family, and one wall features a blurry shot of his grandson swinging a bat. "I always love photographing children," says Power. "Adults have learned to put on a photographic presence; children haven't learned that yet." His own family albums contain rejects from his art. For the "Fibonacci's Face" series, Power borrowed a formula from the medieval mathematician Leonardo Fibonacci. Crickets pinned to a piece of cotton became "Twenty Eight Inhabitants of a Common Grave," while a man passing a wall of graffiti is titled "One Political Activist, 89 Political Agendas." Power has recently moved on to digital photography, and he's enjoying experimenting on the computer instead of in the messy darkroom. He'll be taking his digital camera with his thousands of negatives overseas when he moves in the spring. Unlike other retirees who might choose to relocate to a warmer climate, Power is looking forward to England. "I like the light on rainy days," he says. "Mark Power: The Farewell Tour 1967-1998: New Work and Treasures From the Past" will be at the Kathleen Ewing Gallery, 1609 Connecticut Ave. NW, through Nov. 29. Artists Wanted Wanted: artists with critical minds and tough skins for 10-week workshop culminating in public performance. This weekend at Dance Place, potential participants and curious audience members will see the fruits of the latest group to participate in the Field/DC, a program that provides artists in mixed disciplines the opportunity to give and receive feedback in a "safe" environment. A performance artist, poet, dancer, choreographer and visual artist will occupy the stage at different points. "What this process really does is help you talk about work," says Laura Schandelmeier, choreographer and group facilitator. "You have a testing ground for ideas." The Field has guidelines for discussion -- such as an artist is not allowed to explain his work before performing for the group. Group members are not allowed to simply say they like or don't like it; they must elaborate. "It can be the most difficult place to show work, but it can also be the most supportive," says Schandelmeier. Started by a bunch of New York choreographers in 1986, the Field came to the District thanks to Schandelmeier, who spent a few years in New York before moving back to her native Washington. A maximum of 12 people can join the $50 workshop, which Schandelmeier offers biannually.
The Field/DC performs Sunday at 7 p.m. at Dance Place, 3225 Eighth St. NE. $5. 202-269-1600. Bridges to Art
Tonight the Arlington Arts Center will host the second installment of "Bridges to Contemporary Art," an informal, free event designed as an opportunity for people to learn more about the AAC. Tonight's event features the four artists in the current sculpture show "Fall Solos" and will have food provided by the Aegean Taverna and microbrews by Bardo Rodeo. The event starts at 7 p.m. at AAC, 3550 Wilson Blvd. The next program will be Dec. 19. CAPTION: "The Reverend Elijah B. White Blesses the Hounds, 1997" was taken by Mark Power, who is moving from Leesburg to England. ec CAPTION: One of photographer Mark Power's "Haunted" series, this photograph of a young female model's bald head is on display at the Kathleen Ewing Gallery through Nov. 29. ec