‘Outlook’: EHCC photo exhibition to feature work of 4 artists

  • Image courtesy of Kanani Daley
    Photographer Minny Lee’s series of photos, “Encounters.”
  • Image courtesy of Kanani Daley
    Photographer Phil Jung’s photo, “Couples Kissing.”

The East Hawaii Cultural Center and Hawaii Museum of Contemporary Arts presents “Outlook,” a photography exhibition, opening at 6 p.m. today through June 29.

“The photographs are responsive and reminiscent of time and place, which frame a perspective of people to the landscape they live within,” said exhibit coordinator Kanani Daley. “The collection of work from individual artists Minny Lee, Phil Jung, Laurel Schultz and Andrzej Kramarz impart insight of the social participation, conscious and unconscious, with place.

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“Each image inquires how the human element develops or poses obstacles for the dissemination of culture and visceral knowledge of land — our collective home.”

Lee, a Honolulu-based artist, is faculty member at the Honolulu Museum of Art School and at the International Center of Photography. She is a multimedia artist who employs photography, audio, video and site-specific installation work. Lee’s work, “Encounters,” is a series of trees that visually elaborate the metaphysical spirit of trees — close to home and abroad.

“The portraits are reflections of my inner state and childhood memories; each tree has its own personality,” Lee said. “For one year, I photographed trees near my house — the goal was to create images from the ordinary and mundane. Some of the later images are from travels in France. Whether made domestically or abroad, the images attest to nature’s universality and my longing for nature.”

Jung was born and raised in the Lower Hudson Valley of New York and lives and works in Honolulu and Boston. He teaches at the University of Hawaii throughout the school year and at the Massachusetts College of Art and Design through the summer.

Jung’s work focuses on the host culture’s social relationship to the landscape.

“Steering clear of pre-fab assumptions disseminated by the tourist industry, I turn my camera to the relationship between the people who inhabit Oahu and the sacred landscape that connects them,” Jung said.

Jung has participated in exhibitions throughout the U.S. including the Griffin Museum of Photography in Massachusetts, Houston Center for Photography in Texas and Foley Gallery in New York. His work is in the permanent collection of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

Kramarz, Outlook curator, is a Polish-American artist, lecturer, curator and editor of photography books.

His series of photographs, “A Piece of Land,” brings seemingly innocent landscapes back to life through photographic documentation and the testaments of survivors. Kramarz merges visual with audio to connect witness, place and story.

Kramarz asks us to reflect on the phenomenon of memory while influencing preconceived interpretations through the historical context of truth. The symbolic boundaries of these places will forever harbor the remembrance of tragedy and loss of World War ll. We are now asked to question why and remember not to forget.

Schultz, a Captain Cook resident, explores the natural world as a lens on human nature. Her series, “Understudies,” takes the viewer to the depths of the waterscape, where mystery of the other worldly permeate the imagination.

“Hawaii is the most remote population center on Earth, thousands of miles from the nearest major land mass — it is a tiny speck in the Pacific Ocean,” Schultz said. “Here, the ocean is an ever-present fact of life. Once a swimmer is in the water, the strength and immensity of this saline body are never far from mind.”

Tonight’s opening will feature live koto music from So-Shin Kai and Friends starting at 5:30, followed by a reception 6 and artist talks with Kramarz and Jung beginning at 6:15.

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‘Outlook’

What: Photo exhibit featuring the work of Minny Lee, Phil Jung, Laurel Schultz and Andrzej Kramarz.

Where: East Hawaii Cultural Center, 141 Kalakaua St., Hilo.

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When: Today through June 29. Opening reception at 6 p.m. today. Gallery hours are 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.

Information: www.ehcc.org.