The Art of Troy Gua
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2011 to 2012, 2014 to present

Does #LPP bring you a joyful and healing escape? Help power the project (and get behind the scenes access and cool stuff) by joining #ClubLPP 👉


"Troy is a gifted artist with amazing vision and detail. The thoroughness in his works shines amazingly through. Truly in awe of his work and expect even more awesome things in the future"
Questlove - musician, entertainer, pop culture guru, and Princephile

"It's fun to watch an artist push himself. Troy is not only pushing but he's reminding us how much fun Prince has been to look at for the span of his career. Troy's skill and drive on this project is amazing."
Steven Parke - artist, photographer, and former Paisley Park art director

"I was mesmerized by the universe Troy has created with the Little Prince series. I felt as if I was in a dream where only one man's mind could create such a surreal yet incredible tribute to my favorite artist, Prince."
Mathieu Bitton - artist, Grammy nominated designer, photographer, filmmaker, and Princephile

"Le Petit Prince is so amazing. It takes the energy of Prince and makes it mini but the excitement is anything but. This little guy takes me back to the thrill of loving Prince back in the early 80s."
Touré - writer, journalist, pop culture expert and commentator

The 'Le Petit Prince' (LPP) project is a growing series of lovingly detailed and meticulously staged photographs - a surreal reimagining, in sculptural miniature, of the life and career of Prince Rogers Nelson, my artistic hero and my life’s and work’s most profound influence and inspiration. I owe a great debt of gratitude to all the photographers and directors who captured Prince's essence over the years, and to all the designers, stylists, and artists who contributed their magic and talent to his aesthetic, inspiring awe, and inspiring this work - thank you.

This sculptural figure, LPP, is a constantly evolving one-of-a-kind sculpture with countless hand-crafted outfits, props and a selection of facial expressions (heads) made to pay visual homage to the style of Gerry Anderson’s ‘Supermarionation’ characters, with a heavy dose of inspiration from Rankin/Bass Productions. It is not for sale and never has been, but exists as the key prop, subject, and vehicle for the art, these photos, which are my way of memorializing the moments that mean so much to us fans, in a surreal, fantastical, other-worldly way, that hopefully delights. It's not a Barbie doll, it's not an action figure. If it were to be made into a mass-produced doll, it would lose all its magic. What would be the point of what I do, then? If the art appeals to you - the carefully staged and photographed images - there are limited edition signed and framed prints and a beautiful collection of images in a series of artbooks currently available in my site's shop. I hope you can enjoy the work for what it is, my way of paying tribute to my hero, Prince Rogers Nelson. Thank you.

In November 2012 I received a cease and desist letter from Mr. Nelson's lawyers for making available merchandise that allegedly included copyrighted trademarks. Allow me address this and my subsequent return to making this work. For clarification, a cease and desist letter is not a legally binding order, it's not a personal opinion, it's not a condemnation, it is a threat letter. To think or say that because I received this letter means Prince disapproved of the project in some way is inaccurate and misinformed, and to speculate either way is pointless. The letter I got had to do with the use of the Prince symbol and the name 'Prince' in the title of the project 'Le Petit Prince' (which was used as a nod to Antoine de Saint-Exupéry's 1943 French novella as well as a reference to Mr. Nelson) on merchandise and the recreations of existing album imagery in merchandise such as t-shirts and posters that fans requested I make for them. Incidentally, selling merchandise is completely different, legally speaking, from selling artwork such as limited edition prints or collector art books.

I complied, but I could have argued against all of it and found legal precedent to refute my work, and would have likely won, due to parody law and the Fair Use Act, but I didn't want to fight my hero. Fighting would have been in direct opposition to what the spirit of the project was and is about - celebrating the genius of Prince, my life's and work's most profound inspiration. I believe Prince would have respected that I carried on expressing myself with my art, because he certainly wouldn't have allowed anyone or anything to stop him from making HIS art. So, I'm actually following Prince's prime example by continuing to express my artistic freedom. I'd like to believe that he found love, respect, and admiration at the heart of this project.

In 2014 I went back and reworked the #LPPisART series, attempting to channel the spirit of Prince with a more refined and more fantastical vision. The early photos from 2012 were really just snap shots of something I made, but when I returned to the project, it transformed into something unexpected for me - it became a way to relive moments that meant so much to me, to us. It became a way to memorialize the feelings we had when we heard a certain song, when we attended a particular concert, or when we witnessed breathtaking performances. The pictures turned into staged images with art direction and the project became more about capturing the essence of my genius hero than just pictures of an inanimate object – it became art. At the time, when I finished the 80s, it felt complete. Now I'm compelled to continue, by popular demand as well as by my own need to celebrate and remember.

All work here ©2011-2019 TROY GUA

The Prince Estate is not affiliated, associated, or connected with Troy Gua or Le Petit Prince, nor has it endorsed or sponsored Le Petit Prince or Troy Gua. Further, The Prince Estate has not licensed any of its intellectual property to Troy Gua or Le Petit Prince.