We had the good fortune of connecting with Alexis Trice and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Alexis, what is the most important factor behind your success?
I have found that the measures of success for a painter in New York can be different, if not greater, than that of working artists in other cities. For example, just being able to make rent can feel like you’ve made it big. But really, success can mean being featured in a gallery, gaining popularity on social media, or simply in knowing where you’ve come from and how much you’ve persevered in exploring your personal growth. My work is driven both by stubbornness and by my own fascination with the natural world—a curiosity that never seems to be satiated. I’ve found that sharing my work with peers keeps me focused on striving toward my ultimate vision and honing my skills. Small glimpses of the bigger picture gently nudge me along as an artist; sometimes it’s crystal clear and sometimes I get lost in the fog, but I try to follow my heart no matter what I’m experiencing.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
As a New Yorker, I appreciate the city and know it to be a very special place, but the outdoors and wildlife are my truest loves. I feel an almost holy connection with nature and it has become the driving force of my work. The pandemic was and still is a very challenging experience; as an artist, I work alone and at times it has felt difficult and isolating. Unexpectedly, and (in retrospect) thankfully, it has also allowed for a growing awareness of the natural world around us. Alongside trauma, loss, and loneliness, we’ve also learned to slow down, savor, and appreciate what our immediate surroundings have to offer. Despite our current constant stream of social media communications, I observed a hunger for a different kind of connection: one with nature and the balances around us. This has been what my art has been exploring.
I am proud of the deepening of my practice and certainly excited about many of the upcoming shows I have this year that I’ve worked so hard for!
Getting to where I am certainly has not been easy, and still continues to require a lot of humility and perseverance. I’ve juggled many varying odd jobs while trying to simultaneously paint, paint, paint. It takes a lot of blind faith, courage, and maybe even a bit of delusion to quit your side hustle and paint full time. I have finally made that leap and although it has its unique new sets of challenges, it has been incredibly rewarding and I feel grateful to be doing it.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
One thing that I am not is a proper tour guide! I think one of the best ways to get to know a city is mostly by wandering around with a loose itinerary. My favorite haunts are mostly in the East Village with its endless options for dining and drinking. Cafe Mogador serves up a delectable Moroccan and Middle Eastern brunch. I would always recommend a leisurely walk to the one and only Strand Bookstore where you get lost in the dizzying array of books and their immaculately curated art books selection. Don’t forget Chinatown: always fun to see the delicacies being sold on the streets, and they make some of the best pastries in the city, in my humble opinion (especially for those who have a savory palate). My favorite museum is a toss up between the Met and The Frick—best to save a full day for each before some dancing at Nublu and nightcaps at Amor y Amargo. This is making me miss pre-pandemic life!
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I am extremely grateful for the many special people who have shown support and love throughout my life. My family, especially my mother, has always encouraged my practice since I was very young. I took an oil painting class when I was 7 years old and that was an incredibly impressionable experience for me. Then I went to LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and being fortunate enough to get into that school in my formative years was a turning point. Afterwards, receiving my BFA at the School of Visual Arts set my sights on painting not just a passion but a livelihood. So once again I would love to thank my mother, my family, and a handful of very incredible friends out there. You know who you are.