For the unacquainted, Stefano Alcantara is one of the most talented and sought-after tattoo artists of the modern age. Born and brought up in Lima, Peru, Stefano’s fascination with art was influenced by comic books. As a young boy, Stefano developed a passion for drawing. Later, his interest in drawing translated to other media, including oil, acrylics, charcoal, color pencils, and airbrushing.
Stefano holds a degree from the Peruvian Institute of advertising in Graphic design. He was introduced to the tattoo world at the age of eighteen, after coming across a tattoo magazine at a market in Peru. Stefano’s combined passion for tattoos and art developed into a career and he started his first shop in 1999 in Lima, Peru.
As a self-taught tattoo artist, Stefano Alcantara has dedicated much time traveling the United States for conventions. This eventually allowed him to come up with his own original realistic style. Jose Alcantara, Stefano’s grandfather, is also a renowned artist. Stefano’s style is heavily influenced by his grandfather’s work, with most of Stefano’s work being inherently close to his grandfather’s.
Interestingly, Stefano Alcantara doesn’t view art as a business. To him, tattooing is more than that. Stefano sees the human skin as a canvas for creating an indelible mark in a person’s life. His approach to tattooing has helped him become one of the most sought-after tattoo artists in NYC. One might even argue that his talent is not so far off the tattooing master Booth, who is featured in several tattooing publications including Pounded Inks 10 Top Tattoo Artists.
Stefano Alcantara comes from a nation with a unique approach to tattooing, known for its distinctive tattoo designs. That Peru would produce one of the greatest tattoo artists today is no surprise. After all, several early archaeological tattoo discoveries were found in Peru.
In 1920, archaeologists discovered tattooed mummies in Peru dating back to as early as the Eleventh Century AD. Although there isn’t a lot of evidence about the significance of tattooing within the Pre-Incan culture, the intricate nature of the designs draws one to the conclusion that tattooing during the Pre-Inca period underwent significant development.
The most exciting aspect of Stefano’s work is its 3D nature. Stefano’s work appears to be three-dimensional even without the help of subdermal implants (which are quite popular among tattoo artists). At first glance, you may notice consistent aspects of powerful and dark imagery in the artist’s work. Grey and Black is Stefano’s specialty, and he works magic in this domain. Realism, with strong aspects of surreal imagery, best describes Stefano’s work. Unlike other realism artists who are timid about using color, Stefano isn’t shy about incorporating color in photorealism.
Through the years, Stefano Alcantara has reserved an appreciation for the more traditional forms of art, and his tattoo studio also acts as an art gallery where he showcases some of his paintings and those of other artists. Stefano’s tattoo career has allowed him to travel across the globe providing fresh inspiration and expanding his artistic influences. Stefano Alcantara’s oil paintings have been showcased in various group exhibitions across the United States and abroad. In 2014, he also held a solo exhibition at NYC’s Last Rites Gallery. In 2016, he was invited to Rome, Italy to participate in an exclusive exhibition held at the Muse D’Arte Contemporanea.