Starting out doing Sirius Satellite Radio with Howard Stern and ending up doing art shows, Pat Gallagher has found his home and his passion in Louisville.
1. Tell us a little bit about yourself:
PG: I’m married with two boys. I grew up in a town outside Philadelphia called Bryn Mawr. I graduated from West Chester University
2. How did your journey take you to art?
PG: I was in NYC working for Howard Stern at Sirius Satellite
radio. I was there for a week. While sitting in the hotel bar doodling a man told me I was an artist. I came back to Louisville and a woman named Sandy Barber said lets put on a show...that show was November 2006...things have been going crazy since.
3. How would you describe your pieces?
PG: My pieces are all about feeling and passion. I try to capture how complex and truly beautiful women are. I learned this from my wife Trish and there is not a day that goes by that I am not amazed
4. As an artist, what has been your proudest moment for your work?
PG: When I got a call two weeks ago from the Philadelphia Museum of Art saying they want to hang/sell some of my work....oh my GOD!!!!!!!! Even if I don’t sell anything there, I am going to put this on my tombstone.
I am also proud when my wife asks me to drawing something for her bosses, coworkers.
As a reg. Republican, I did a show for Barack Obama... what a mind blowing experience.
Another time is when I heard my kids bragging about me to their teachers and friends. I cried when I got back to my car.
I held a showcase at the home of hall of fame basketball coach Larry Brown who lives in Bryn Mawr....turns out, my mother worked as a maid in a house a few doors down from Larry's house. At the age of 10, I started working with my father who was a gardener. I used to pull weeds and cut grass around the corner from Larry's home. As the son of Irish immigrants that night I knew the American dream is real.
I saw a grown man cry looking at one of my paintings. I confirmed he was not insane.
Every time somebody tells me they have to have a certain piece that "it is talking to them".
I want to share a great Muhammad Ali story from last week but I think you get the point. There are a ton of proud moments
5. What do you find to be the key to self promotion in the art world?
PG: Honesty. Know who you are...warts and all. Know what you want. Then tell people. You will be amazed how many people will want to help you. Also...if an idea pops into your head on how to promote...go for it. The worst thing that will happen is people will say no. Make your journey about others not about yourself.....example the person who introduced my work to Larry Brown...he made that show happen. I will never forget those kinds of things
6. In your opinion, what is the most challenging aspect of giving up the day/corporate job to follow a passion?
PG: Money. My wife Trisha is so supportive...she wants me to be happy. She has always said "follow your dreams" I don’t want her to worry. I want my kids to go to Harvard/Yale. That is harder to plan when you are an unknown artist.
Some doubt you...act like you’re lazy/crazy. But you just have to believe in yourself before anybody else does.
7. What advice would you give to aspiring artists looking to branch out on their own?
PG: Just put it out there...some people will connect with it...some will not.
8. Take a minute and brag. Anything you want to tell us:
PG: I really have found what I am supposed to be doing. Since I found out I was an artist I have lost 40 pounds, gone off blood pressure meds, prozac. I tell people it was like I was just waiting to die as opposed to living. Now that I am living I really see how there are a lot of people that need to wake up. I really think my story helps some people see a different perspective of the world
9. You’re doing a show here in Louisville at Rueff Lighting downtown. Tell us how you landed that?
PG: Kathryn Hartzell of Reuff Lighting bought a piece of mine at ATL's Lobsterfeast. We met and talked and hit it off. She ended up buying another piece. When I told her how I can’t seem to break into galleries in Louisville, she said lets see if we can put on a showcase. First thing is that got my work into a home at this years Homearama...now this.
The show will be 10/10 at Reuff on Broadway from 6 to 9pm. It is by invitation and they are going to invite at least 1000 people....I know for a fact there will be some serious power players there. Part of my sales (if I have any) will go to U of L Star program. My wife works with children/families with Autism and to me we all need to step up and help these people. I can’t tell you how nervous I am about this show....
10. What’s your favorite place to find inspiration or to hang out in Louisville?
PG: Sulley's at Fourth Street. You can find me drawing at any bar or any event...example I was drawing on millionaires row at this years Derby. I spent about 90 min with Bo Derek, another great story.
11. Since this is Louisville.com, tell us your favorite thing about Louisville?
PG: If I was not living in Louisville I would not have an art career. The amount of "go for it's" from friends and strangers is mind blowing. Some friends from Philly used to tease me about living in KY. I would reply..."really...how many times has the Queen of England vacationed in Philadelphia?" How about other royals from around the globe??? Dead silence was their reply....Best kept secret in the United States.
Example of what Louisville is to me.....I really admire David Jones Sr. To me he is a beacon on how one should live their life, principles, vision, hard work, ethics, compassion, family Etc. It seems the world does not make men like him anymore. I want to have lunch with him someday. I just want to ask him things like...What do you know about life that I don’t???? Because it is Louisville...that lunch may actually happen someday...ya never know : )
For more information please visit: www.patgallagher.org