October 6, 2009
By Claire Sykes
Butters Gallery, one of the most respected art galleries in Portland, is also one of my favorite. It consistently shows work that holds my gaze, shifts my brain and gets me all inspired. Plus, the Butters clan couldn’t be a friendlier, more generous bunch.
One person in the family (maybe more?) is also a talented artist. Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA) graduate Jeffrey Butters’ oil paintings and monotypes are featured in the gallery’s current exhibit (October 1-31, 2009), which also includes works by ceramic artist Betsy Wolfston, of Eugene, Oregon.
I especially like Jeffrey’s monotypes, with their overlaid, subtle colors, each image built from many printings. His oil paintings, in particular, suggest a Turneresque sensibility, as if Jeffrey took a corner of one of the great artist’s seascape skies and lost himself there.
Brushstrokes sweep across his canvases, the paint casting a soft glow from the gold dust in it, which he also mixed into his printing inks. At the gallery’s opening last Thursday, he told me, “I’m influenced by nature, especially the morning sky. Working is 90 percent looking and ten percent action. My paintings and prints are meditations, slow discoveries.”
© Claire Sykes. All rights reserved.