As Northern Kentucky’s only multidisciplinary arts organization, The Carnegie plays a vital role in our local community to prioritize accessibility and outreach. Our galleries host exhibitions and performances that are committed to amplifying diverse voices and giving opportunities to regional artists that go beyond exhibiting within our galleries. 

Gallery Staff

Sso-Rha Kang, Curator

Sso-Rha Kang is an educator and curator based in Cincinnati, OH. From 2021-2023 she served as the Director of Galleries and Outreach at Northern Kentucky University where she curated exhibitions, performances, and organized events with an emphasis on cross disciplinary collaboration. Her research interests delve into areas of institutional critique, blankness, and aesthetic experience. She has taught from 2017-2023 at institutions such as, The University of Cincinnati (Department of Anthropology and School of Art), The Art Academy of Cincinnati, and Northern Kentucky University. Additionally, she has curated exhibitions for Wave Pool, The Carnegie, Pearlman Gallery, Third Space Gallery, and The Contemporary Arts Center. She is currently one of two Consulting Curators for the state of Ohio in the exhibition New Worlds: Women to Watch (2024) for the National Museum for Women in the Arts in Washington, DC. 

Matt Distel, Executive Director

Matt Distel is the Executive Director of The Carnegie. In 2013, he first joined the staff as Exhibitions Director. Matt has been organizing exhibitions since 1994—with a particular focus on artists from the region. Prior to joining The Carnegie, Matt held curatorial roles at the Cincinnati Art Museum and the Contemporary Arts Center as well as served as Executive Director of Visionaries + Voices in Cincinnati and HVCCA in Peekskill, NY. He was also the co-founder and director of Country Club, a commercial gallery based in Cincinnati and Los Angeles.  

Matt has curated and organized numerous exhibitions and installations including projects with SIMPARCH, Kendell Geers, Temporary Services, The Yes Men, Beth Campbell, Alexis Rockman, Jay Bolotin, Future Retrieval, Terry Berlier, Design 99, Courttney Cooper, Ryan McGinness, Ellen Berkenblit, Edie Harper, Tom Wesselmann and Atlas Group. 

The foundational premise of The Carnegie Galleries program is that local artists can significantly benefit from introductions to arts professionals that typically operate outside of the NKY/Greater Cincinnati region.

Connecting the Region

The Carnegie Galleries is a contemporary art gallery whose primary goal is to support and exhibit works by contemporary artists – often artists who are deeply connected to our region. The galleries serve as an organizer, co-conspirator and collaborator. 

Our exhibitions seek to be a connector for artists and curators who can offer each other new opportunities to expand their networks and add to their creative output.

Curatorial Collaboration

Our unique exhibition model, the “Visiting Curator Program” allows for series of exhibitions and events that aim to connect artists to other curators, writers, critics, collectors, gallerists, and fellow artists to expand opportunities available to them.

In the past 3 exhibition seasons, The Carnegie has invited 18 guest curators into our galleries and exhibited over 205 artists. In the 2022-23 exhibition season, The Carnegie hosted 6 guest curators from outside the region to meet and engage with local artists in arranging exhibitions.

Community Gathering Place

The Carnegie strives to become a community gathering place, collaborating with locally-based artist collectives, independent businesses, and arts organizations such as: Art Academy of Cincinnati, MiniMicro Cinema, NKY Chamber Women’s Initiative, Queen City Cabaret, NKY Cooperative for Educational Services, Cincinnati Art Book Fair, Pique Gallery, Pones, Covington Independent Public Schools, Visionaries + Voices, ThunderSky, and NKY Pride.

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LANGUAGE: Sexual references, mild obscenities, and homophobic slurs.

ALCOHOL: Alcohol is consumed.

VIOLENCE: There is a boxing match in the musical.

FOR WHICH AUDIENCE: Kinky Boots is a mature musical comedy. The play is best suited for Grade 8 and up.

RATING: If it were a movie, Kinky Boots would be rated “PG-13.”


SINGIN’ IN THE RAIN is a family-friendly production, appropriate for all ages.

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