Tom Butler

The United Kingdom, London The Photographers' Gallery

Tom Butler (UK, 1979) collects memories, thresholds and hiding places and attempts to re-manufacture them in a visual way. Having graduated with two degrees in Sculpture at the Chelsea College of Art and Design (2005) and the Slade School of Fine Art (2007), Tom Butler is most recognized for his on-going series of appropriated original Victorian cabinet cards. These unique hand painted or collaged cabinet cards – previously discarded albumen photographs – feature portraits of men and women rendered anonymous by colourful patterns and forms applied in meticulously detailed gouache, or manipulated through collage. These interventions express Butler’s natural inclination towards introversion and the opposition of displaying artwork essentially about hiding. He states: “I use these portraits as psychological clotheshorses to create grotesque and sinister scenarios, enabling me to project thoughts, fears and anxieties in an immediate and direct way and often with a macabre sense ofhumour.”