Figurative, Abstract and Mystical — The Art Of Tony Lee

Lee’s bizarre char­ac­ters emerge to us, speak­ing of  the uncon­scious vis­ions that are some­what in between the fig­ur­at­ive and the abstract, the earthly and the dis­tantly mystical.
A recog­niz­able human form becomes an insep­ar­able part of  the com­plex image, while sug­gest­ing the rela­tion­ship amid the famil­i­ar urb­an land­scapes and their inhab­it­ants. His works unlock the hid­den and the extraordin­ary sole on which, from the first glance over­looked, the mundane city is built. Whilst inter­con­nect­ing con­tem­por­ary and ancient ele­ments, Lee reveals the ritu­al­ist­ic and the tri­bal bey­ond the urb­an­ized surface.

Whilst observing the prints the civ­il­ized city, as well as the civ­il­ized man, appears to be hid­ing the inner-self  that can be traced back to the indi­gen­ous people, indu­cing wild and child­ish, yet fright­en­ing feelings..
The orna­ment­al masks, which demon­strate a vari­ety of  happy, angry, sad and cheeky faces, an insight into the artist’s know­ledge and interest in world cul­tures, mean­while, the bright and rather raw col­ors speak of  a cul­ture that is dis­tant to most of  the west­ern public.

A dec­or­at­ive and eye-catch­ing touch bel­li­ger­ently gives a sens­ory exper­i­ence, which, in con­trast to the pre­dom­in­ant and restrained tones used with­in the con­tem­por­ary west­ern world as well as art, awakens the prim­it­ive feel­ings from bey­ond the consciousness.

Tony Lee’s works tends to fight the pre­val­ent ‘chro­mo­pho­bia’ — a syn­onym for an attempt to devalue col­or, to take away the power that raw col­or pos­sesses. Bright notes under­pin the vari­ety of  reli­gious and spir­itu­al sym­bols whilst form­ing the divine and demon­ic imagery. It becomes a monu­ment for the power of  the spir­itu­al, for the power of  the prim­it­ive that could be found with­in the archa­ic, as well as urb­an­ized worlds.

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