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The Daily Northwestern

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Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

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Exploration of photography and nature: ‘Misread Affinity’ on display at Evanston Art Center

Isaiah Tatum/The Daily Northwestern
A long hallway displays Seung Jae Kim’s photography collection, “Misread Affinity.” The collection depicts natural features across the Midwest.

Described as “beautiful” and “breathtaking” by gallery visitors, Seung Jae Kim’s photography is on display at the Evanston Art Center until Dec. 17. Kim’s exhibit, “Misread Affinity,” presents monochromatic images of nature that describe a personal connection with the outdoors.

The stark tones of his printed photographs stand out against the white walls of the exhibition center, capturing landscapes in various compositions. He wrote in his artist’s statement that the gallery aims to “depict the intimate distances occurring in hikes in Midwest forests.”

The opening reception on Nov. 12 featured a conversation between the artist and his audience. Attendees shared their passion for art and learned more from Kim himself.

“These (photographs) are just outstanding — the quality, the crispness, yet the layered feeling,” said Evanston Art Center board of trustees member Elizabeth Pope. “He’s just had a beautiful vision with his work.”

Kim edits his photographs over several years and the longest editing process for a single piece was eight years, he said.

Kim explained the title “Misread Affinity” symbolizes that his work “is not a concrete idea.” He said his work aims to show the complexity of nature and his role within the environment. While he does not depict people in his work, his work aims to display the connection between humans and the natural world.

“I found I am also one of the entities in the surrounding ecosystem,” Kim said.

Kim said he envisioned the solo show as a collection, intending to have photographs enhanced by each other.

Leslie Scattone, the Evanston Art Center board of trustees chair, said she found Kim’s work “stunning.”

“I love to see them on the big scale to feel like you’re being enveloped by these different spaces,” she said.

Mary Burke, one of the attendees, echoed Scattone’s sentiments and said she was amazed Kim had the ability to “get certain lights to pop out among the rest” in his photographs.

“Misread Affinity” is just one of many exhibits the Evanston Art Center displays each year.

Pope and Scattone both said they love contributing to society through art and providing opportunities for upcoming artists.

“It’s nice to contribute to the community and provide opportunities for these fabulous artists,” Pope said. “It’s a real treat to do and let people see people’s creativity. I’m always blown away.”

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