Kodak Lecture Series: Rafael Goldchain

Rafel Goldchain
Friday, January 23, 2009, 12:00 AM

Rafael Goldchain’s Polish-Jewish ancestors emigrated to South America in the 1930’s, and many others perished in Poland during the Nazi regime. Also lost in the turmoil of war and emigration were most of the portraits of his extended family. I am my Family presents a family album of traditional portrait photographs, however the only subject is Goldchain himself. In a complex process involving genealogical research, the use of makeup, styling, costume and props, Goldchain transforms himself into his ancestors. With each reinvention of himself, Goldchain traces the evolution of Jewish culture from tradition to modernity and engages the viewer with the history of a family decimated and scattered by the traumatic events of the 20th century. Born in Santiago, Chile, Rafael Goldchain received an MFA from York University and a BAA from Ryerson Polytechnic Institute. He is currently the Program Coordinator of the Applied Photography Program at Sheridan Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning in Oakville, Ontario. Goldchain’s photographs have been exhibited globally and his work is in many private and public collections including France’s Biblioteque National, the Canadian Museum of Contemporary Photography and New York’s Museum of Modern Art.

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