"The feminine and mother nature have both always been a source of great inspiration to me. Being the focal point of many of my works, the feminine body and deities serve as a muse for many of my projects."
Born and raised in Cuba, Alexis Larrinaga has always shown an innate affection towards the Arts. Colors, textures, styles and methods, be it Plastic Arts, Sketching, Cartooning, Graphic Arts and Design, Leather and Woodwork, as well as Acrylic and Oil Paintings, he is always exploring all the different ways in which he can express his unique perspective of the world. As a child, he manufactured mini sculptures and Knick knack memorabilia using clay and wood to sell to tourist along the Havana shores, and in Arts and Crafts fairs, to help his parents. In a weekend, he would earn three times what his parents would earn a month in their professional careers in Teaching and Electrical engineering in the island. In Luyano, his neighborhood in Havana, he was the designated cartoonist for all the kids indulging their requests for cartoons and comics.
At age 19, Alexis and his family migrated to the Dominican Republic, where he worked as a freelance cartoonist for several publications and company events. Alexis obtained his associates in Arts, Crafts and Plastic Arts at the Instituto Politécnico Pablo de la Torrente Brau, in Havana, Cuba. He also performed side jobs in retail and photography to pay for school and ultimately attained his Bachelor’s Degree in Advertising and Marketing at APEC University in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. In his admiration of the greats, Alexis also studied under Candido Bidó and worked on a few murals and projects for the Dominican Air Force alongside him during his time at the Candido Bidó School in Santo Domingo.
He worked as an illustrator and cartoonist for “Plan Internacional” a non-for-profit organization dedicated to the protection and safeguarding of children, as well as for many publications like “Cañabrava”, “Universitas,” “Revista 110,” “Mini Generacion,” among other print publications in the Dominican Republic. In his illustrations, he would touch on many subjects ranging from sports, politics and the state of affairs to also many controversial subjects like race and trafficking.
He participated in many Freelance Work Projects as a Mural Painter, Creative Illustrator, Cartoonist, Graphic Designer and Web Designer, for companies like CNT (Compañía Nacional de Television) in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic from 2000 to 2008. In 2010, he decided it was time to expand his horizons and finally reached the great “La Yuma,” a name many Cubans use to address the United States. He started a new life first landing in Orange, NJ then quickly moved to the Atlantic City Area in South Jersey. There, he started working as a Food Runner for the Resorts Casino and then worked his way up to Intermediate Cook, thus initiating his newfound medium for his artistic expression in food and Culinary arts.
He continued his artistic pursuit expressing his love for vibrant colors and artistic expression inspired by the Ocean. He adopted different mediums through which he would experiment with acrylics, oils, clay, gesso, pastels on canvas, bottles, fabrics and burning his images and ideas onto wood, ceramics and many other surfaces.
The feminine and mother nature have both always been a source of great inspiration to Alexis. Being the focal point of many of his works, the feminine body and deities serve as a muse for many of his projects. “I like to use the image of a woman in many of my paintings, because women are a symbol of creation, life and hope. Creation, because within her, is where all life begins. We all come from a woman; this is my way of paying homage to that.”
Alexis has always used his artistic expression as a way of exerting into the Universe, his spirituality, beliefs, wants and desires. As in many artists, there is always somewhat of a spiritual element in his work, and his desire for a child became a common theme very quickly, as he etched the pregnant mother and child in the womb using many mediums and diverse surfaces.
In 2015 he arrived in Florida to explore new opportunities in the arts and painting opportunities, and most importantly in pursuit of the expansive artistic presence here in South Florida. He excitedly joined the Ricky’s wall project as a new venue to present and expose his artwork.
In 2018, he showcased at the Milander Center for Arts and Entertainment for the “Lets Flamingle” event where the star of the night was the Florida Pink Flamingo, and all participating artist presented their personal and varied colorful renditions of this beautiful bird. Alexis was interviewed and featured in the public relations and promotion campaign, and his “Flamingo Nights” piece was displayed as part of the many ads leading up to the event. In the same year, he also participated in the “Alboroto y Calma” Art show, at the Milander Park where he had 2 of his other artworks displayed among other artists at the Hialeah venue.
In 2020 Alexis joined other artists in the Shipyard Garden Project, which is a food court/ entertainment/venue space for special events and daily activities in Downtown Hollywood. It is under construction and as part of the décor, the design encompasses all walls and the many Metallic Plates between the light fixtures in the ceiling depicting all participating artists renditions of their perception of Nature. In a private event in 2021, where all participating artists presented and their work mounted on the light fixtures, Alexis was elected among his peers to have produced the best Artwork for the Shipyard Garden Artist Event in Hollywood, Florida, with his Light Fixture Plate Project depicting Toucans in the wild.