The Last Resort

Photographs by Arifin Graham

Arifin Graham was born in an 18th-century cottage nestled amid the rolling hills of Kent, England, and soon after was whisked away to the wilds of 1950s rural Alberta. Dispatched to boarding school in small-town Ontario at the age of 11, he thereafter survived two years of pretending to study at UBC. A keen photographer from an early age, Arifin next attended the San Francisco Art Institute, studying black & white photography under Jerry Burchard and longtime Ansel Adams colleague Pirkle Jones. Arifin returned to England in the late 1970s, whereupon he met by chance two pinstriped advertising executives over a pint in a London pub, who offered him a job at their firm. He thereby embarked on a career in graphic and book design, later working with clients such as the David Suzuki Foundation, The Dalai Lama Center, and the Stephen Lewis Foundation. Arifin moved with his wife Wiluya to Victoria in 1990, having completed a BA (Art History) at UBC, and later an MA (Leadership) at Royal Roads University. He continues to work as a graphic and book designer through his company, Alaris Design

On Earth Day 2022, in a moment of inspiration, Arifin began the series of black & white portraits of the people of Lahaina and Maui, which form the nucleus of his upcoming show at The Chapel Gallery in Victoria.