14.04.11 → 30.07.11
Xippas Arte Contemporáneo is pleased to announce André Butzer’s first solo show at Montevideo.
André Butzer, well known world-wide for his paintings since more than a decade, has already shown with Xippas Gallery Athens in 2008. His precisely organized and coloristically very intense oil paintings drift through space and time. Abstraction means in his case that his works seem to abstract themselves from each other in an also life-long process. He calls his latest output therefore “Neo-Cézannism”.
The seeming structural anarchy facing the viewer on his first contact with Butzer’s work, in which cartoon-like figures and geometric motifs are crammed within a pandemonium of bright colours, gradually recedes and the initial suspicion of the existence of a purely personal vocabulary turns progressively into certainty: bodiless floating faces, abstract figures sharing common morphological characteristics and nearly shapeless forms – the protagonists of each work – are all alluding to a cartoon. They are the inhabitants of the same imaginary planet, Nasaheim (a name made up from NASA and the Californian city of Anaheim, home of Disneyland), and often members of the same tribe, like the man with stretched out cheeks and black holes instead of eyes or the blonde woman and the black cat.
Butzer’s peculiar characters with their huge black holes instead of eyes, mouths agape and ready to scream, slackly hanging hands and feet, emerge through thick brush strokes and numerous layers of colour. They seem to have escaped from an idiosyncratic Halloween, vacillating between morbidity and tenderness, evoking feelings ranging from affection to horror.
Definitely emblematic, these figures are the products of a personally created mass culture, which pushes deformity to an extreme under the thrust of dozens of allusions. From the history of art to the history of states, from Munch, Pollock, Baselitz to the national-socialism of the “SS” and from Siemens to Walt Disney, Butzer makes countless references to American and German history, contemporary politics and political history, economics and social hierarchy, the entertainment industry, technology, science fiction.
In Butzer’s more abstract works, the figures fade away into the background and the “world” around them darkens as his usual colourful chaos gives way to a grey uniformity interrupted only by sparse lines and geometrical shapes, scratching the surface like skates on ice, without steering a set course but by marking the passage from the figurative to the abstract.
On this occasion André Butzer presents 20 small-scale works in various techniques: oils, watercolors and drawings. This mixed installation which is inspired in his own work, shows André’s abstract side incorporating ten new pieces.