Amplify Academy – Alicia Rheal

Alicia Rheal

I am the Mural Production Director at Dane Arts Mural Arts. I have been creating large scale paintings for over 30 years. My training was as a Scenic Artist, for Michael Hagen Studios in Glens Falls, NY. We painted backdrops and sets for opera, ballet, and theatre. It was an incredible learning experience! I moved to SW Wisconsin in 1993, and to Madison in 2001. My passion is sharing the painting skills I have learned, with folks who never thought they could “be an Artist”, and witnessing the pride and excitement, that comes from being part of a large scale collaborative art project.

Get to know Alicia better

How did you come to work at your current organization?

I was part of the team that started DAMA, along with Sharon Kilfoy, Mark Fraire, and Emida Roller.

Why is the work that you do important to the Madison community? Why is it important for you?

Every time we work with teens and community members, painting a mural, they tell us how much better they feel, and how proud they are, to have been a part of something that will live in their community.

What is your vision for Madison?

I would LOVE to see Madison filled with public art. To have the Public Art honor the broad diversity of Dane County.

When you look back over your whole life – What experiences have shaped you as a woman? and Why?

Knowing Strong and Independent women has given me a blueprint of how full and exceptional life can be lived.

What are some of your practices of resilience? Who did you learn this from and how are these helpful in times of challenge?

In times of challenge, I try and look at the “Big Picture”… Is this particular situation really worth losing sleep over? Who can I ask for help? I can always say “No”….. So often, we feel we are expected to do “—“ (fill in the blank), because we know how to, or we have always done it before, or no one else wants to do it… Being able to say “No”, is sometimes more important than saying “yes”.

What are some of the things you enjoy the most in life? What keeps you inspired, re-charged and brings you joy?

Art/Creating/Painting has always been my passion. Being able to share my knowledge, and at the same time, learning from others is what brings me the most joy. Seeing someone try something, they never thought they would be able to do, and the pride they take away from that experience, keeps me energized!

When you think of your life journey unfolding, Who do you see yourself becoming?

With the help of Amplify Madison, I will be in a greater position to connect with other organizations and groups, who would benefit from the “hands-on” experience of mural making.

Dane Arts Mural Arts