Butch Anthony's Old School

Butch Anthony's Old School Opens May 28th

Butch Anthony is a completely original artist, builder, and picker of things, whose work defies categorization or comparison.  Profiled by the NY Times and featured on American Pickers, Butch’s gentle humour and talent for wordplay has made him a celebrated artist whose paintings have received international acclaim.  

It’s hard to describe in words Butch’s charm and uniqueness.  Give this video three minutes of your time and you’ll understand why Butch is quickly becoming a folk hero and an American legend.

We are thrilled to be opening Butch’s second solo show, Old School at Black Rat Projects on Thursday May 28th. 

Taking his inspiration from 1960’s and 1970’s ‘’old lady paint by numbers’’ and sailor tattoos, Old School presents new work which pays homage to the art which he grew up with: Pinky and Blue Boy, 1960’s and 70’s paint by numbers, and black velvet paintings.  

Old School pays homage to historical Americana culture as well as tattoo culture, textile and embroidery craft ‘’all put together with the interwangle style, with a little museum of wonder thrown in for good measure’’.

Anthony’s reclining females are adorned with vintage sailor tattoos stitched into their portraits, while embroidered ravens and crows perch around them.   Nude thrift store portraits reveal both their insides as well as outsides; Anthony’s signature skeletons are juxtaposed with vivid tattoos that give us the notion of looking through the subject’s façade and into their very being.  

Butch will be bringing a taste of Alabama and the Museum of Wonder to the gallery with a site-specific installation. 

Y’all get ready . . .

Old School
May 28TH – June 7TH
Private View: Thursday 28th May 18:00-22:00
Monday – Friday 10:00-18:00  /  Saturday & Sunday 12:00-17:00

A bit more about Butch Anthony...

He’s known as the person-in-charge in the Friday night auction house called Possum Trot, and the curator of his own museum called The Museum of Wonder, which he has been building since he was a boy – both on his Alabama property. This is truly a wondrous place to breathe in and is the best place to get the full Butch experience.  Butch is also the creator of his own home, built out of scrap, over two decades, with no plans, only to be featured in the New York Times.  
His skeletonized photographs and bone paintings have become internationally acclaimed.  Galleries in Portland, Oregon, Marfa, Texas, Amsterdam and Germany regularly display Butch’s work, and he recently had his first solo museum show, Vita Post Mortum at the Akron Museum in Ohio.

’Visiting Butch and John Henry Toney on their land in Alabama was so heart opening and unforgettable.
They share such a beautiful life-long creative collaboration and friendship.
Two rare and genuine human beings. John Henry Toney drawing on the front porch and Butch tinkering in his workshop, or working on the beautiful house they he built on his land.
For me visiting Butch's workshop felt so much like home, the shed in the yard where I used to paint when I was a kid, and all the collections of junk I would make things from. It was like returning to a lost part of myself.

- Swoon, artitst

‘’Butch is one of the most talented, extraordinary  human beings I've ever met. He is not only one of my favourite artists but one of my favourite people.’’

- Connor Brothers, artist

‘’Butch can work wood or metal, he can grow anything. He has an incredible way with the things of the world, whether it’s a tree or a piece of junk, and he has his own aesthetic about how it should go together. He knows the name of every leaf and every plant and which ones you can eat. And if the world ever came to an end, I would want to be by his side.”

- Natalie Chanin, owner and designer of Alabama Chanin

"Butch Athony is a celebration of life, and death, and all the oddities in between."

- Christina Day
Akron Ohi

“In a whole number of ways that derive from his highly creative imagination,” “he comes up with innovative thoughts and processes. He breaks down whatever he’s rendering into these various parts that are part physical and part invented by him. His is a really nice way of looking at the physical world.”

- Fred Fussel,  a former curator at the Columbus Museum in Columbus, Ga.,

‘’I'm so pleased to hear that Butch has got another show coming up with Black Rat. I'm always looking forward to seeing what he's been working on. 'Want' feels like an ugly word, but it's my overriding feeling every time I see his work. I feel so incredibly lucky to own one of his paintings.’’

- Candice Tripp, artist