Studio 1469 Presents Nalinee Darmrong The Smiths: 1985-1986

By Editorial Team on June 13, 2016

Fri, 17 June 2016 - Wed, 31 August 2016

Photo: © Nalinee Darmrong 2016
Photo: © Nalinee Darmrong 2016


Opening Reception: Friday, June 17 from 6pm to 9pm


Artist Talk + Book Signing: Saturday, June 18 from 6pm to 9pm. Remarks at 7pm.

Studio 1469 presents Nalinee Darmrong: The Smiths: 1985-1986, showcasing over twenty never-before-seen photographs of one of the most influential bands of the late twentieth century at the apex of its popularity. The exhibition is organized in conjunction with the Rizzoli release of the book The Smiths.

“Nalinee has had an extensive history and involvement within alternative music. She’s often memorialized that dedication via her camera, with skill and a unique perspective,” says Norm Veenstra, Director of Studio 1469. “Psyched to exhibit a choice selection of some of her earliest efforts.”

Now, The Smiths are considered one of the most iconic rock bands from the 1980’s. Despite a public collapse of the band, together under four years and with a catalogue of just about seventy songs, there remains a cult devotion of fans. Photographer Nalinee Darmrong traveled with and captured the band during its peak years: the Meat Is Murder and The Queen Is Dead tours 1985–1986. These photographs impart the frenetic energy of the band during performances, and a private, almost familial chronicle of the band offstage and behind the scenes. Equal parts intimate time capsule and love letter to The Smiths, this exhibition is a look at this important band during the height of its creative period.

“I have always been an avid music enthusiast, and there was always music playing in the home. When I first heard The Smiths, I immediately knew they were different, in the very best way,” says Nalinee Darmrong. “At 17, I saw my first Smiths show at The Warner Theatre in Washington, DC, June 11, 1985. I had no idea how much my life was about to change. With incredible luck, timing, and help from my parents, friends and the band, I was so fortunate to make it to all these shows. All the while, I had my junky Minolta 35mm camera in hand, trying to capture as much of the experience as I could, both for myself, as well as for all the friends/fans who weren’t able to go to shows because of prior commitments. I will always be indebted to The Smiths for one of the most incredible musical and personal experiences of my life.”

Available for purchase during the exhibition, The Smiths is filled with reams of photographs of the band backstage and onstage, most unpublished; ephemera including original set lists, backstage passes, tickets, and handcrafted promo materials; personal effects such as letters and clothing, and other items.

About the Artist
Nalinee Darmrong is a photographer who lives in Washington, DC. She is currently a house photographer for the 9:30 Club.

About Studio 1469
Studio 1469 ( is an artist 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 and 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 and Yellow line Columbia Heights Metro.

Gallery Hours:

  • Saturday: 1pm to 6pm
  • also by appointment

Studio 1469 is located at 1469 Harvard Street NW in the rear. For more information visit