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HAROLD PLOPLE
(1946 - 2012)

"My father rejected me, my stepfather abused me, and my mother was a drunk. It has taken me 50 years to try to come to grips with life. I am a recovered alcoholic and take medication to prevent psychotic episodes."

Harold Plople was a prolific artist who suffered from schizophrenia. He lived on Skid Row in downtown Los Angeles for many years before becoming a resident at Harbor View House in San Pedro, California, a residential home for adults suffering from mental illnesses. Plople's work is extremely strong. The explosive quality of his paintwork is oddly offset by titles written in a fine cursive hand across his paintings. His titles describe the marginal stereotypes of his subjects such as Pimp, Couch Potato and Topless Dancer. His technique blends thin washes of paint with bold strokes of violent color and movement and carry such written description as, Deadbeat Losers and Asking for Spare Change in the Urban Wilderness. "I kill myself with every painting I do," Plople says, "I lose a little bit of myself. The painting fills the void." In addition to having a mental illness, Harold was a recovering alcoholic. After spending seven years at Harbor View House, Harold stopped drinking and gave himself over to his art. In his later years, he painted primarily issues familiar to the homeless community. Plople passed away in 2012 after suffering from cancer.

San Pedro, California

Can't Find a Parking Spot (circa 2011)
Watercolor and oil on paper (10 1/2" x 14 3/4")