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New women-focused book on D.C. punk adds fresh perspective to music history

Coup Sauvage & the Snips are featured in the new book centered on D.C. punk. (Antonia Tricarico)
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Plenty of documentaries, books and zines tell the stories of D.C. punk from the perspective of men. But why aren’t more women involved in the conversation? The question struck local photographer Antonia Tricarico as she was compiling her first book.

“Frame of Mind: Punk Photos and Essays from Washington, DC, and Beyond, 1997–2017,” released last week, tells the story of that era of D.C. punk rock through Tricarico’s images plus essays written by female musicians.

“While editing the photos, I realized that I had heard a lot about music mostly from men and it was like, what if there is more to be discovered?” Tricarico says about the book, which she’ll discuss at Politics and Prose this weekend (5015 Connecticut Ave. NW; Sun., 3 p.m., free).

Concert photos in the book feature seminal local acts including Fugazi, Deep Lust and Priests, along with bigger touring names such as Joan Jett. Many of the photos were taken at D.C.-area venues, though some were shot in places around the world (including Tricarico’s home country of Italy). Adding a personal touch are the 14 essays from punk’s trailblazing women — including Jett and Kristina Sauvage of Coup Sauvage & the Snips.

“Making music allows us to not only reflect our world but also imagine the world we want to see — one that’s way more brown, way more feminist, way more queer and way more fierce,” Sauvage writes in her essay.

Tricarico will display 32 photographs from “Frame of Mind” at Lost Origins Gallery in an exhibit opening Saturday (3110 Mount Pleasant St.; opening reception, Sat., 6-9 p.m., free). Photo prints and copies of the book will be available for purchase.

“The local music scene wasn’t just about music, it was a community of people,” Tricarico says. “Its presence was making D.C. a better place to live. Music had a specific message against gentrification, sexism, racism and so on.”