Elizabeth Rynecki, author of Chasing Portraits, A Great Granddaughter’s Quest for her Lost Art Legacy in conversation with Judith Margles, OJMCHE Director
Rynecki's book is a memoir of one woman's emotional quest to find the art of her Polish-Jewish great-grandfather, lost during World War II.
The everyday lives of the Polish-Jewish community depicted in Moshe Rynecki's paintings simply blended into the background of Elizabeth Rynecki's life when she was growing up. But the art transformed from familiar to extraordinary in her eyes after her grandfather, Moshe's son George, left behind journals detailing the loss her ancestors had endured during WWII, including Moshe's art. Knowing that her family had only found a portion of Moshe's art, and that more pieces remained to be found, Elizabeth set out to find them.
Spanning three decades of Elizabeth's life and three generations of her family, this touching memoir is a compelling history of the richness of one man's art, the devastation of war, and one woman's unexpected path to healing.