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#5WomenArtists – Vardi Kahana: ‘The Grandchildren of Cousin Shmuel, Copenhagen, Denmark’




Photo by Ingrid Damiani

Vardi Kahana (b. 1959) is a photojournalist born in Tel Aviv, Israel. She grew up in an orthodox home with two brothers and parents who encouraged her talent for drawing from an early age. Kahana discovered her passion for photography during her first year of college. She soon started working as a photojournalist, capturing people’s expressions and stories. Kahana has often spoken about how she’s always “tried to portray the local Israeli society in an anthropological gaze.” In 2011, Kahana received the Sokolov award for outstanding achievement in journalism, the first photographer to receive this award for print journalism.

Vardi Kahana (Israeli, b. 1959), ‘The Grandchildren of Cousin Shmuel, Copenhagen, Denmark’, 2004, archival inkjet print, Gift from the Artist, AG.2014.6.1

The Grandchildren of Cousin Shmuel, Copenhagen, Denmark is part of Kahana’s most personal project, One Family. The series, which includes 60 photographs, is the result of Kahana documenting her family for more than 15 years. Tracing four generations in the years following the Holocaust, her work weaves a complex narrative of Jewish Israeli society from her parents and their siblings, all Holocaust survivors, to their great grandchildren. The Grandchildren was given to the Cummer Museum by the artist. This photograph shows the grandchildren of her cousin, Shmuel, living in Denmark. Together, the children have grandparents who are Jewish, Christian, and Muslim, but they share a grandfather who was a survivor of the Holocaust. Kahana captures the three religions through these children on a trampoline as an image of hope.


Kahana, Vardi. “BIO.” VARDI KAHANA,

Kahana, Vardi. “One Family.” VARDI KAHANA,

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