There’s something so effortlessly awesome about our latest Shoe Cult Ambassador Alice Lancaster. She’s equal parts funny as she is talented, and you may have seen her art plastered on (some highly debated) American Apparel T-shirts as of late. She took us on a tour of her studio space in Bushwick, Brooklyn so we could get an up close and personal look at her NYC life—and her amazing cat.
(Shoe Cult photos by Cara Stricker; others by Kathy Lo)
Full name, age, job:
Alice Lancaster, 28, artist.
Three Emojis to describe yourself:
My sneaky face, “this is a secret,” and a mystery symbol my friend Stacey Mark and I use for everything.
Where do you live in NYC? How long have you been there?
I live in Bushwick on the cusp of Ridgewood. I moved here because its quiet, safe and affordable. I’ve lived in my apartment for 5 months, and I’ve lived in NY for about a year and a half.
What do you love most about your neighborhood? What could you do without?
I love that the streets aren’t covered in garbage and that it doesn’t smell like pee. The only thing I could complain about is the distance from here to Manhattan.
Do you live with anyone? Tell us about your awesome cat.
I live with my younger sister who is also an artist. My cat is such a prince. That’s his nickname, but when I call him Prince, I’m referring to the singer.
Tell us about your art! How would you describe your work?
Well, I do a lot of portraits so those pieces are sort of tributes to the people I know and love and others who I greatly admire. My other works are more about humor and sexuality.
Who inspires you?
I’m inspired by a lot of the people I paint.
What’s a recent project that you’re really proud of? What are you working on now?
I recently painted a portrait of John Waters on a leather jacket, and it’s still for sale! I’m working on some detailed portraits of some of my favorite men. (Gene Wilder is next).
How does art influence your personal style?
It has made me not want to wear color or patterns. I have been wearing a lot of black and neutrals lately and putting all my color in my artwork.
Petra texted me and said that she was doing some T-shirts for AA and wanted to collaborate with me on a design. She told me what she wanted and, after spending a lot of time on Google, I found an image to draw from. I was shocked that everyone else found it so shocking. I mean, I understand it’s not something you see everyday (let alone on a T-shirt), but if it were the other way around, it wouldn’t be nearly as shocking. Our culture has been very accepting and encouraging of male masturbation, but it’s just not that way for women.
Tell us about Gynolandscape. How did you get involved? What did you display at the most recent exhibition? What’s coming up next?
Petra is a good friend of mine and has always been really supportive of my work. I’ve been a member of the Ardorous since she founded it. I had a painting and a giant pink neon piece of the drawing I made for the American Apparel T-shirt.
Any advice for aspiring illustrators or painters?
Don’t try to emulate your favorite artist. Keep making work all the time even when it’s bad. You have to make a lot of bad work in order to make good work.
What do you do when you’re not painting?
Finally, show us your favorite GIF at the moment.