Las Vegas-based artist and museum director Alisha Kerlin talks about:

The arc that led her to be in the 2010 Greater New York show at MoMA PS1, and subsequently how that changed her career, including working at Greene Naftali Gallery; the social anxiety of being in the show, while also feeling honored to be included with so many artists she deeply admired; the opportunities she received from being in the show, including the solo show she had concurrently at the gallery Real Fine Arts; dealer Zach Feuer coming into the show at Real Fine Arts and buying all Alisha’s paintings, leading to a solo show with him, allowing her to cut down on her day jobs and spend a lot of time working in the studio; how getting an artist-in-residence led her initially to Las Vegas, and within a few days she realized she probably wouldn’t want to go back to Brooklyn; how ultimately it was more satisfying to get the residency gig at UNLV, five years ago, than it was getting into Greater New York; what it’s like living and working (as interim director of the Marjorie Barrick Museum of Art at UNLV) in Vegas for the last five years, including buying a house and having a kid;

And in the follow-up conversation, Alisha talks about how even though Greater New York was huge in giving her opportunities, including leading to the artist-in-residence gig and ultimately moving to Vegas, the show for her is the least interesting thing to talk about, and how she is excited and inspired by discovering unfamiliar, veteran artist’s work, which comes with her current role at the Museum; the importance and influence of her former teacher at University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Michael Brakke, who started the school’s artist-in-residence program and was hugely influential on generations of students, among them Alisha and Wade Guyton.

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