Yechiam Gal was born to Rachel and Pinchas Goldberger in Jerusalem, Israel, in 1949 into a semi-orthodox Zionist family. (His father adored David Ben-Gurion.) He is a conceptual digital artist and educator living in upstate New York in the village of Catskill, along the Hudson River. He teaches media applications at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York.
Gal grew up on Kibbutz Gvat, where his ideas about socialism and democracy were formed. He was influenced by Yigal Allon, A.D. Gordon, Eliezer Ben‑Yehuda, Yosef Vitkin, Menachem Ussishkin, and so many more great visionaries.
He served in the Israeli Armed Forces as a paratrooper and was discharged as a lieutenant. Once out of the service, Gal commenced studying medicine, but after his first year, he was recalled to serve in the Yom Kippur War in 1973, after which he was awarded a medal of honor for bravery and promoted to captain.
After the war, Gal did not return to his medical studies, but instead decided to pursue a degree in philosophy at Hebrew University. There, he was fortunate to attend classes with the legendary intellectuals Yeshayahu Leibowitz, Hugo Bergmann, Eliezer Schweid, and Gershom Scholem.
He joined the Jerusalem Writer’s House and was a student of the great poet Yehudah Amichai and a close friend of the celebrated novelist Meir Shalev.
Taking a break from life and his studies, Gal began working as an ambulance driver and a life guard at Ein Gedi Nature Reserve near the Dead Sea in the Judean Desert. There, he began to appreciate the beauty of nature and turned to the study of photography and animation at Hadassah Academic College.
After graduating from Hadassah Academic College, Gal was hired by the Israeli Broadcasting Authority (IBA) as an animator where he worked with some of the most creative artists of the times, including Dudu Geva, Yossi Abulafia, Yohanan Lakicevic, Benny Levin, and others.
In 1976, Gal resigned from the IBA and left Israel for the United States, to enroll at the School of Visual Arts in New York, successfully completing his BFA in Photography in 1981. Remaining in Manhattan, Gal worked as a photojournalist for various local and international publications. Then, in late 1982, he returned, with his wife and infant son, to Israel, where they lived for the next 6 years. While residing in Jerusalem, Gal opened the Vista News Agency and produced photojournalistic work for publications in Israel and abroad.
In 1988, Gal returned to New York with his wife and two young children. He opened a commercial studio in Manhattan, successfully retaining a number of established clients, but constantly struggling to survive while preserving his views as a socialist.
Gal never gave up on photojournalism, shooting for the NY Post, NY Times, and other domestic and international publications, such as Der Spiegel and others. Simultaneously, Gal taught classes at School of Visual Arts, Pratt Institute, and Rockland Community College.
In 2015, Gal opened Atelier Progressif Creative Art Center in the village of Catskill.