Smithsonian Journeys Experts

Rafael Chacón

photo of Rafael Chacón

Hipólito Rafael Chacón is Bruce and Suzanne Crocker Director of the Montana Museum of Art and Culture and Professor of Art History and Criticism at the University of Montana-Missoula where he lectures on a broad range of art historical subjects. He received his Ph.D. in art history with honors from the University of Chicago, having been awarded numerous research fellowships to study in Europe and the Mediterranean basin, including an award from the Spanish Ministry of Culture for his dissertation on Michelangelism in renaissance art. He has written on a range of topics related to renaissance and baroque art, both in Europe and in the Americas, most recently focusing on revival style architecture in the U.S. during the late 19th century. He has also been awarded the top national and international prizes for his research in the field of vexillology or flag studies. Rafael has been an expert for many Smithsonian Journeys programs in Cuba, Europe, and Russia. He has twice walked the Camino de Santiago, the ancient pilgrimage route across France and Spain.

What Our Travelers Say

Wonderful, interesting lecturer and very well prepared. Rafael made the trip exceptional and that's how we describe the difference between Smithsonian and other tours.

- Barbara M.

Rafael is a passionate teacher and a talented lecturer. His presentations were completely engaging, enjoyable, and memorable. He is thoughtful, clever, funny, and informed. He has a particular talent for customizing his presentations for the particular audience. He was, in a word, superb.

- Cate F.

Rafael was very knowledgeable and an outstanding lecturer. I learned so much - and he was always most approachable, kind, and accomodating.

- Smithsonian Journeys Traveler

Upcoming Tours

Cruising from Morocco to Spain’s Andalusian Coast

8 days | Starting at: $5,690
Apr 20, 2023 - Apr 27, 2023

Casablanca to Lisbon on the 184-guest Le Dumont-d'Urville
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Ancient Egypt and the Nile

14 days | Starting at: $6,297
Mar 2, 2024 - Mar 15, 2024

Featuring Abu Simbel
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Portrait of Portugal: Lisbon, Porto and Cruising the Douro River

12 days | Starting at: $5,490
May 3, 2024 - May 14, 2024

Aboard the 132-guest Amalia Rodriguez
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Southern Italy and Sicily

15 days | Starting at: $6,374
Oct 18, 2024 - Nov 1, 2024
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