UNLV Visiting Artist Lecture Series 2015: Allison Miller

Allison Miller's Fogsmokesteam, 2014

Allison Miller, Fogsmokesteam, 2014, Acrylic, Flashe, modeling paste, archival marker and pencil on canvas


In many ways the campus bustle seen during UNLV’s opening weeks reflects Allison Miller’s current process of work. The Los Angeles-based painter stated in a 2012 interview that she begins a painting with a burst of energy.

“When I start a painting there are no parameters, except perhaps the dimensions of the canvas itself, and I have nothing to lose. It feels like the energy at the beginning of a painting is looser and more frenetic and it gets calmer and slower as the painting gets built, until I think I’ve finished it, but I’m usually wrong,” Miller said.

Miller is known to work with traditional materials of oil, acrylic, and pencil, and have dirt be part of her palette, and create colors that tinge her paintings with hints of earth and sky, or rebel against nature with the manufactured color of institutional infrastructure. All while using strong shapes to harness the brush strokes that are her conversation with elements to which she responds.

As the UNLV Department of Art and the Barrick Museum’s first guest speaker for the 2015 UNLV Visiting Artist Lecture Series, Miller will be speaking on her methods and other experiences on Thursday, September 3, at 7 p.m.

ABOUT THE ARTIST: Allison Miller lives and works in Los Angeles. She received her BFA from RISD and her MFA from UCLA. Miller is represented by Susan Inglett Gallery, New York and has had multiple solo exhibitions at ACME, Los Angeles. Group exhibitions include the Pizzuti Collection’s exhibition Now-ism: Abstraction Today, the Hammer Museum’s Made in L.A. 2012, Painting in Place, curated by Shamim M. Momin, as well as exhibitions at GAVLAK, Los Angeles, the Orange County Museum of Art, the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, Bregenzer Kunstverein, Austria, Ameringer/McEnery/Yohe, New York, and Gagosian Gallery, Los Angeles, among others. Her work has been featured in frieze, Artforum, Flash Art, Modern Painters, Hyperallergic and the Los Angeles Times, and was included in Painting Abstraction: New Elements in Abstract Painting, by Bob Nickas. Miller was most recently awarded the 2014 SFAI Diebenkorn Fellowship.

ABOUT THE LECTURE SERIES: The UNLV Visiting Artists Lecture Series features a diverse array of some of the most compelling artists and thinkers working in the art world today. This important program brings both established and emerging artists to campus to discuss their work in public lectures and to offer individual critiques to our BFA and MFA students. This program has established itself as an invaluable resource for UNLV students and the public alike. The primary mission of the Visiting Artists Lecture Series is to educate, inspire and foster a greater understanding and appreciation of contemporary art through visual presentations and discourse.

This post was written by Ed Fuentes. He is a UNLV MFA Fine Art candidate and produces Paint This Desert, a regional arts blog.

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Who Should be the Subject of Deborah Aschheim’s Next “Obsession”?

Who should be the subject of Deborah Aschheim's next obsession?

Look, we said to ourselves last Friday afternoon: we’re about to open two new shows. Let’s write a new question on the chalkboard.

The response was so quick and so fulsome that James — one of the Barrick volunteers — went out of the office this morning to take photographs and make a transcription.

Our question: Who should be the subject of Deborah Aschheim’s next “Obsession”?

(Deborah Aschheim is UNLV’s current artist-in-residence and the Barrick is showing a collection of her recent drawings. The show is called The Kennedy Obsession.)

The answers so far:

The state of obsession itself
Lady Gaga
Marilyn Monroe
Movie Stars
Nixon [response from the artist: “Already did that.”]
The feminist movement
Love Yourself
Is the government really are who they say they are
Not everyone knows
The Wizard of Oz
OJ Simpson
Nelson Mandela
Mahatma Gandhi
The mind [response from the artist: “Did that too.“]
Bus Stops
Childhood cancer
Police brutality
Occupy Wall St
Dita von Teese [twice!]
Graffti [sic]
Rocks Bay Max [I’m interpreting this one as “Baymax rocks”]
The Beatles
A non-American event [response from the artist: “You win – DGA”]

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Visitor-Made Desert Drawing


Barrick volunteer Shelly Volsche writes an open invitation to our next Visitor-Made event. Text and photographs are both hers.


drawing in the garden


You are invited to help the museum create a visual catalog of the drought resistant plants in the Museum’s Xeric Garden. From fine details to broad visuals, your drawings will become part of the official Visitor-Made Guide to the Garden.




Desert inspired pieces beckon you to explore the garden. This bronze tortoise welcomes you at one of its entrances.




While the word “desert” often conjures images of desolation and emptiness, the Museum’s Xeric Garden has details of beauty…

… and color.


red and green flora




Benches are embraced by the Xeric Garden as it envelops you in its atmosphere. Allow the seating to inspire your drawings and vision.


a number of plants


The garden has a wide assortment of cacti, trees, and ground shrubs. Learn more about the variety of native bushes thriving in the Nevada desert.




And while you are here, you never know who else might be enjoying the Xeric Garden with you.

We hope to see you on March 19th!

All ages and skill levels are welcome. Art materials and field guides will be available.

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Branden Koch: Be the Banana

Branden Koch sketchbook collage 1

We are looking forward to the UNLV Forum Lecture “Art Practice: Memory, Myth and Storytelling” and asked artist Branden Koch to send us a few images for the Museum’s blog. He kindly shared these samples from a sketchbook collage. Branden’s lecture — which he has described as an exploration of artistic bananaology, “Be The Banana: How to slip on your own skin and get caught in your practice, a non-prescription” — will blend humorous anecdotes and art to explore the dynamic relationships between memory, myth, and storytelling. He’ll be here on April 6th at 7:30pm in the Barrick Auditorium.

See the details of the event on the UNLV calendar.

See details on Facebook.


Branden Koch sketchbook collage 2 Branden Koch sketchbook collage 3Branden Koch sketchbook collage 4 Branden Koch sketchbook collage 5 Branden Koch sketchbook collage 6 Branden Koch sketchbook collage 7 Branden Koch sketchbook collage 8 Branden Koch sketchbook collage 9 Branden Koch sketchbook collage 10 blog.pg11 Branden Koch sketchbook collage 12 Branden Koch sketchbook collage 13 Branden Koch sketchbook collage 14 Branden Koch sketchbook collage 15 Branden Koch sketchbook collage 16 Branden Koch sketchbook collage 17 Branden Koch sketchbook collage 18

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