by Margaret Fessenden
The Alliance Art Gallery will feature the work of their newest member Rebecca Butler during the month of February. Butler is a well recognized tri-state artist that works in many different media with current concentrations in silk painting and pottery.
The daughter of artist Gary Butler, Rebecca grew up surrounded by art. Butler readily states that her father was her biggest influence and that she learned oil painting from him as a child. Her father's encouragement to make her own way and to develop her own style led Butler on her lifelong pursuit as an artist. Rebecca loves to travel and her art work is highly influenced by her "family vacations" and her love of history.
Today Butler works primarily with silk painting and pottery. In both mediums, the element of color is most important. In each project, each creation, Butler pushes color, stating that her work can never be too colorful. Attracted to the looseness of silk painting, she believes it is the best of both worlds: the control of drawing with resist and the uncontrolled paint that blends the two together. Her love for pottery began with her classes at Quincy University. Butler says getting muddy with the end result being a beautiful, complete object that can be held, touched and viewed is both rewarding and challenging. Her current pottery is hand built, using texture as part of the designs. She has recently begun using an ancient Egyptian decorating technique to enhance her pottery. By using clay slip to draw henna designs on her pieces prior to glazing she creates a one of a kind finish that Butler believes conveys an exotic aspect to her work. You can view a short video of her process on the gallery website blog at www.allianceartgallery.com
Butler received her BFA from Quincy University where she currently teaches Ceramics. She has also taught various painting classes for the Quincy Art Center, JWCC and privately. She has exhibited widely throughout Iowa, Illinois and Missouri. Butler donates her time and art work to several local charities and has provided archival framing services to the Walt Disney Hometown Museum in Marceline, Mo.
An exhibit of Butler's work will open on Saturday, February 13, with a reception from 5 p.m. until 8 p.m. and will continue through March 11. The opening coincides with the Second Saturday Gallery Open House, a monthly gathering to meet Gallery members and view their new work. A piece of Butler's art work will be given away at a 6 p.m. drawing. Admission is free.