April 26th and April 27th, Q&A with Director Elizabeth Rynecki after the 7:00pm screening. April 27th and April 28th, Q&A with the director after the 3:00pm and 7:00pm screening.
ELIZABETH RYNECKI - Director/Producer/Writer - Elizabeth has a BA in Rhetoric from Bates College (’91) and an MA in Rhetoric and Communication from UC Davis (’94). Her Master’s thesis focused on children of Holocaust survivors. In 1999, Elizabeth designed the original Moshe Rynecki: Portrait of a Life in Art website. Her book, also titled Chasing Portraits, was published by Penguin Random House in September 2016. This is her first film.
Film Summary: Moshe Rynecki (1881-1943) was a prolific Warsaw-based artist who painted scenes of the Polish-Jewish community until he was murdered at Majdanek concentration camp. After the war, Moshe’s wife was only able to recover a small fraction of his work, but unbeknownst to the family, many other pieces survived.
For more than a decade Moshe’s great-granddaughter, Elizabeth, has searched for the missing art, with remarkable and unexpected success. Her commitment was inspired by the obligation she felt to tell the story of her great-grandfather’s paintings. Her family lost most everything in the Holocaust; given how much of Warsaw was destroyed, and how few Polish Jews survived, it is a miracle that her father, grandparents – and any of her great-grandfather’s paintings – survived at all. Spanning three generations, Chasing Portraits is a deeply moving narrative of the richness of one man’s art, the devastation of war, and one woman’s unexpected path to healing.