Lisa Kereszi was born in 1973 in Pennsylvania and grew up outside Philadelphia to a father who ran the family auto junkyard and to a mother who owned an antique shop. In 1995 she graduated from Bard College with a Bachelor of Arts, finally settling on a concentration in Photography after double-majoring in that and in Literature/Creative Writing.
After college she moved to New York City and worked as an assistant to Nan Goldin. In 2000 she received a Master of Fine Arts degree from the Yale University School of Art. She has been on the faculty there as a Lecturer since 2004, and also serves as Acting Director of Undergraduate Studies in Photography. She was appointed Critic and also the Director of Undergraduate Studies in Art in 2013, and Senior Critic in 2019. She also is a guest critic at the Hartford Art School, and has been a National Endowment for the Arts Fellow at the MacDowell Colony.