Photographer Gordana Gerskovic says she likes “to find beauty in things that are not beautiful.” (Leon Gerskovic)

Most days, you can find Gordana Gerskovic with her camera pointed 6 inches from a dirty garbage can or a pile of broken glass, crouching awkwardly on the ground. The photographer, who calls her method “snorkeling,” almost never reveals the subjects of her abstract, painterly works.

“I like to make images that are mysterious,” she says.

This week, Gerskovic is kicking off the monthly member artist series at the new Foundry Gallery in Shaw with her show “Metamorphosis: From Decay to Display,” running through Nov. 29. A Foundry Gallery member for 21/2 years, Gerskovic takes extremely close-up photos of walls, rocks, dirt and anything else she comes across while walking around the city. She’s especially fond of earthy colors, like those found in seaweed, rust and wood.

“I always carry a camera around,” she says. “The images find me rather than me finding them. They appear from somewhere, and I capture them.”

Gordana Gerskovic’s abstract, painterly photographs are on display at the Foundry Gallery’s new space in Shaw. (Gordana Gerskovic)

Gerskovic got into photography seven years ago, but she’s always been fascinated with the idea of collecting images of objects. “I grew up in a poor family in Zagreb, Croatia,” she says. “We couldn’t afford much, so I would cut images out of magazines and collect the ones I liked, just so I could own something.”

Gerskovic first started taking photos up close while enrolled in photography classes at Montgomery College.

“I noticed that everyone in my classes was taking portrait and beautiful landscape photos, and I didn’t want to do that,” she says. “I like to find beauty in things that are not beautiful.”

Foundry Gallery, 2118 Eighth St. NW; through Nov. 29, free; opening reception Fri., 6-8 p.m.

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