Benjamin Butler was born in Westmoreland, Kansas, USA in 1975. He received an MFA in painting from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2000 and currently lives and works in Vienna, Austria.
Butler continues to exhibit in solo shows in cities around the world, such as New York, Los Angeles, London, Vienna, Basel, Beijing, and Berlin. Significant solo exhibitions in recent years include “Two-Tones, Monochromes, and Other Landscapes”（Tomio Koyama Gallery, Tokyo, 2020）, “Silver/Landscapes” (Klaus von Nichtssagend Gallery, New York, 2019), “Recent Trees and Monochromes” (Galerie Martin Janda, Vienna, 2018) and “Trees Alone” (Tomio Koyama Gallery, Tokyo, 2016). He has also participated in various group exhibitions, internationally, including “sotto voce” (curated by Robert Bordo, Bortolami Gallery, New York, 2019), “Verzweigt” (Museum Sinclair-Haus, Bad Homburg, Germany, 2014), and PS1/MOMA’s Greater New York in 2005, and “Globe as a Palette; Contemporary Art from The Taguchi Art Collection” Hokkaido Obihiro Museum of Art/Kushiro Art Museum/Hakodate Museum of Art/Sapporo Art Museum, Hokkaido, Japan.
Butler creates landscape paintings that are structured around the motifs of mountains, trees and nature. The simplified forms of branches and tree trunks expressed through vertical lines, diagonals, triangular forms and curves are rhythmically reiterated and occupy the entirety of his margin-less canvases in a manner reminiscent of a geometric pattern. Such are complemented through his use of vivid contrasting colors, creating a unique painterly expression that appears to explore the borderline between representation and abstraction.
His works, while harboring various elements in terms of composition, at the same time permeate with a simple and poetic tenderness, as well as an air of contemporary cool. As though appealing to individual memories, they confer upon viewers a time for calm contemplation.