Lee Du Ploy
'The Glass Facade'
3–24 February 2017
Daily 11am–7pm (closed on Sunday, Mondays and Public Holidays)
Venue: ZZHK, 3 Wa Lane (between 227-229 Hollywood Road) Sheung Wan, Hong Kong
Lee du Ploy has two passions: Art and Psychology. Mental illness can be caused by genetic heritage or the wrong chemistry in the brain. But often it is thrown upon us as a reaction to deep trauma and pure tragedy. Bad things happen. We can't always avoid and protect ourselves from the hardship that life tends to dump on us. And we all react very differently.
This is what intrigues Lee du Ploy the most. He expresses his encounters with troubled human beings in a series of bold portraits and short stories as seen in this exhibition. His writing is clear and non-judgemental. He makes the worst mental inflictions seem normal, as if it could happen to ourselves tomorrow. As he says: 'Its never easy to hear harrowing tales of how life went wrong. I was always struck not by how different, but how much alike we are. Language and attitudes may change but invariably the problems of human psychology remain the same.” When you face Lee's work, you don't know what you are looking at, is he the painter or the sitter? The doctor or the patient? The dealer or the artist? However, its right that ambiguity which pulls you in. The portraits painted with rough expressive brush strokes remind us of 'Art Brut'. Some are hauntingly beautiful and others awfully ugly.
The Life of Lee du Ploy has followed an interesting path, varied and challenging, from rags to riches, and travelled far and wide to follow his two obsessions: Art & Psychology. Lee du Ploy is a Psychoanalyst, art dealer, husband and lover but being a painter is what he enjoys the most.
「幻象．人生」是藝術家Lee du Ploy的個人人物肖象作品展覽。
Lee du Ploy的一生如像一部電影，如幻如真。 由身無分文的小伙子，辛努多年致富，他用一生，追隨他的兩個迷戀：藝術與心理學。他的一生中央扮演了多個角色，他除了是一名心理學家，作家，收藏家，藝術家及畫廊東主以外，他亦是別人的丈夫，父親及別人的愛人。
As per Sarah Greene: 'At first encounter Lee seemed quite crazy; very chaotic jumping from one topic to the other while playing magic tricks, pulling a HK$ 5 coin from behind my ear. I had no idea what to make of him. I listen to a waterfall of stories and it made me wonder which ones were true and which ones not. Was he really born in Malawi? Did he really make a fortune and than gave it all away? Does he really have a stash of Picasso's stored on his attic? And was he indeed a psychologist treating some the world most rich and famous? I was inclined to not believe any of it but than one day when I was in his little gallery listening to his waterfall of loosely knitted stories, a lady walked in and came to thank him for curing her. And outside another old man was for his free treatment. 'He has something with his knee', Lee said. And I did see a Miro etching and a miniature Henry Moore sculpture on his mantle piece. After numerous more conversations, he started to make sense, despite his chaotic ways, some of his sayings resonates a deep truth and I start to wonder as crazy as it all sounds, if it might true after all. Who knows and does it really matter?
Lee himself doesn't care, what matters to him is that he can keep painting and writing with as his main muse the flawed troubled human being. 'I love painting more than anything else; its a way to see without looking and to feel without thinking. Thoughts are perception. 'Its how we see the world, and what we expect or it.'
This collection of portraits and the people he treated within, is teaching us an invaluable lesson, that however different we make assume ourselves to be, we are remarkably alike.' Lee concluded: 'With a little help, persuasion and honest endeavour, some of those afflicted by the terrible disease of unhappiness can find fulfilment. One most just learn to look in the right place'.
但有一天，我一如既往在他的小畫廊聽他說他的故事，一個女士走進來，特地來感謝他治愈她... 另一個老人，在畫廊外面等待Lee為他作的免費治療。而在他的閣樓，我的確看到一個亨利·摩爾（Henry Moore) 的雕塑。
2017-2 | Time Out Magazine: 'Interview: LEE DU PLOY, The psychologist-artist on his portraits of people with mental illnesses'