Walking through Stokes Croft with a small child can be an interesting experience, even in the middle of the day… but we’ve got a top tip for you! Distract your little art fans from looking at the more salubrious sights by getting them to spot a Lucas Antics piece. Giant bunnies, dandy lions, floral houses and huge playing cards… Alex Lucas has made it her mission to brighten up Montpelier with her bold and cheering designs. We found out where she draws her inspiration from…
Your artwork always raises a smile and brightens up the surrounding area. How do you come up with your designs?
It’s really lovely to hear that my work makes people smile and I love seeing the reaction when people pass my house for the first time. Our surrounding environment has such a huge impact on our day-to-day lives and I can’t see any inspiration living in amongst grey buildings.
My parents were both vets and we lived with the surgery next to our house so I grew up with lots of animals around me. As a child, I experienced many strange and wonderful sights, ranging from two-headed kittens to tarantulas with missing legs and I think this had a huge impact on seeing the world in an alternative way. I use animals in my work as they are easily anthropomorphised and the viewer can project their own experiences of people and personalities onto them.
Your artwork is really visible around town, how important to you is that public element?
It has become more and more important to me as I see the positive effect it has on many people. I hope that painting my house shows people that anyone can do it! It’s also very empowering looking back at a large wall and seeing what you have achieved, especially after many hours of hard work! For me, many of my characters are a reflection of aspects of my personality and when they look back at me, there is a strong recognition of self-acceptance. I hope that others feel that too.
Does being in Bristol have an impact on your work?
Yes! I think Bristol is an incredible accepting City and it houses many different people from all walks of life. It allows individuals to express themselves and therefore thrives in creativity (saying that- there is always room for more improvement…!)
What’s your favourite animal to paint?
I always go back to the rabbit! I’m not entirely sure why but they have a very unassuming personality and I can often work with them in many varied compositions.
Who is your personal art throb?
I do love the work of Grayson Perry- he is doing amazing things for the art world right now. There are also many illustrators and graphic designers I love (too many too mention!) but I love the work of Gary Basemen, Blu, Ralph Steadman, Egon Schiele…
What’s your favourite piece of public art in Bristol?
I adore The Bear in The Bearpit! I also loved the willow whales that were showcased by At- Bristol but has since moved to Bennett’s Patch and White Paddock Nature Reserve. I do wish we had more public art happening within the city, I feel it really brings people together.
Some work by Alex’s art throbs: