Côte Saint-Luc Library presents ‘Familial Ground’ exhibit by Rafael Goldchain

CÔTE SAINT-LUC, SEPTEMBER 26, 2006 – An art exhibit featuring the work of Chilean-born artist Rafael Goldchain will be launched at the Eleanor London Côte Saint-Luc Library (5851 Cavendish Boulevard) on Thursday, September 28. The gallery is open from 10am to 10pm every day. The exhibit will last until November 5.

Entitled “Familial Ground”, the exhibit is an autobiographical exhibition that features digitally-altered self-portrait photographs. Mr. Goldchain says the exhibit suggests that grounding identity within a familial and cultural history is subject to erasures, geographic displacements, and cultural dislocations. He says it entails a process of gathering and connecting scattered fragments of past familial history while acknowledging the impossibility of complete retrieval.

“Familial Ground is the product of a process that started several years ago when my son was born,” Mr. Goldchain said. “I gradually realized that my new role as parent included the responsibility to pass on to my son a familial and cultural inheritance, and that such inheritance would need to be gathered and delivered gradually in a manner appropriate to his age.”

“My attempts at articulating histories, cultural and familial, public and private, made me acutely aware of how much I knew of the former, and how little of the latter. I thought of the many erasures that my family history was subjected to, and of the way in which my South American and Jewish educations privileged public histories.

“While I could access the considerable existing stores of knowledge of Eastern European Jewish life, knowledge of the pre-Holocaust lives of my grandparents and their families only exists in fragments deeply buried within the memories of elderly relatives. As I reached my middle years it became important to not only retrieve basic historical facts such as family names, dates, and genealogical relations, but also to attempt to know the world of my ancestors as a basic foundation of an identity that I could pass on to my son,” Mr. Goldstein said.

Born in Santiago, Chile, Mr. Goldchain received a Master of Fine Arts from York University and currently teaches photography and digital art at Sheridan Institute of Technology. He is an Adjunct Professor at York University’s Graduate Program in Visual Arts. Mr. Goldchain artwork has been shown across Canada, and in the United States, South America and Europe. His work is in the collections of the Bibliothèque nationale in Paris, the Canadian Museum of Contemporary Photography in Ottawa, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Toronto, the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Houston Museum of Fine Arts, the Museum of Photographic Arts in San Diego, and in private and public art collections.

For more information about Mr. Goldchain, visit www.rafaelgoldchain.com . For more information about the Eleanor London Côte Saint-Luc Library, visit www.elcslpl.org .              

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For further information, please contact: Darryl Levine, Manager of Communications, City of Côte Saint-Luc, 514-485-8905, dlevine@cote-saint-luc.qc.ca

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