Dr Rafael Schacter (b. London) is an anthropologist and curator based in the Anthropology Department at University College London. He received his PhD from the same department in 2011 and was a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow 2014-2017. Rafael is currently exploring contemporary art practices in Manila, the Philippines, as part of a wider project on global art. His previous work was focussed upon public art, specifically graffiti and the emergence of street-art, and is set at the boundary of the anthropology of art and of urban space. He has been involved numerous high-profile exhibitions, co-curating the exhibition Street Art at the Tate Modern in 2008; curating Mapping the City and Venturing Beyond at Somerset House (in 2015 and 2016 respectively); Crossing Borders / Crossing Boundaries at the Street Art Museum, St Petersburg, in 2016; and most recently Silver Sehnsucht in London’s emerging Silvertown district in 2017. Rafael is also currently curating a long-term public art project in Heerlen, the Netherlands.
Rafael has authored numerous academic articles and book-chapters as well as three monographs; the award-winning World Atlas of Street Art and Graffiti (2013) published with Yale University Press; Ornament and Order (2014) published with Ashgate/ Routledge; and Street to Studio with Lund Humphries (2018). This latter book includes artists such as Eddie Martinez, Alicia McCarthy, Oliver Laric, and Santaigo Sierra, and is the first monograph exploring the influence of graffiti in contemporary art. Rafael also teaches about public and contemporary art at UCL as well as lecturing worldwide. Since 2015 he has been invited to speak at the Hermitage in St Petersburg, Hong Kong University, the Palazzo Pepoli in Bologna, Green Papaya in Manila, the British Science Festival, as well as numerous other locations.