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I have a lot of projects that are dream projects. I would love to design a functioning fountain for someone. I would love to do all the set design and costumes for an opera.

Painter and illustrator Kristen Liu-Wong is photographed sketching in her sketchbook.

Emanuel Hahn

Everyone wants the MOMA retrospective; you want to have the retrospective that means your life's work was for something. So ideally, that would be my end goal. And it can happen either when I'm alive or when I'm dead. But I don't know. I feel like if you set your goals ridiculously high, you have to achieve at least something kind of cool along the way, you know?

Kristen Liu-Wong's painting called The Craving depicts a raven-haired woman laying on the ground eating cheese puffs.

The Craving/Courtesy of Kristen Liu-Wong

I remember I was watching this documentary on Elizabeth Murray. And before she was given her retrospective, there had been only five female artists who had been given a MOMA retrospective. So my odds don't seem very good. But she got her retrospective the year before she died, so you just gotta keep focusing on the work and hope that the other career things come along.

Kristen Liu-Wong's painting called We Dreamt Of Poppies depicts two nude women lounging in an opium den with a tiger rug, floor pillows, vases filled with pink flowers, and a hot pink lantern.

We Dreamt Of Poppies/Courtesy of Kristen Liu-Wong

The same thing that I find in the art that I love, I would like people in the future to feel that same connection to my work. I would ultimately like to make work that is timeless, and can still be appreciated. Maybe in the past, maybe in the future and present day, but I just want to make something that people can feel connected to at any time. And hopefully it persists.

Kristen Liu-Wong's painting titled My Fingertips Were Tingling depicts a mostly nude woman wearing hot pink panties laying on the ground on a leopard print rug with lizards and snakes all over and around her, while she pleasures herself with one hand.

My Fingertips Were Tingling/Courtesy of Kristen Liu-Wong

The thing that's taking up the most space in my mind right now is, how do I challenge my work to grow and am I challenging it in the right way? So I think as an artist, there’s no set path, and I feel that since I just turned thirty, I'm reaching this point in my life and my career where I need to reevaluate what I want from my art and what I expect from it.

Kristen Liu-Wong's painting titled The Indulgence depicting a woman wearing a robe, sitting on the floor in front of a gilded coffee table, facing a tiered tray of cakes and various snacks, with a pink bong on the floor next to her.

The Indulgence/Courtesy of Kristen Liu-Wong