Valerie Butler


In the wake of my mother’s death, art served as my therapy, salvation, and antidote to crippling grief. I enrolled in a series of botanical drawing courses after losing all interest in the writing and editing that had been my livelihood. I became lost in contemplation while creating works inspired by the fractal patterns of dendrobiums or the delicate veining of hederas and bromeliads. From these meditations I found peace and clarity – and whatever image I created as a souvenir.
A decade after my mother’s passing, my art is still informed by careful observation of the natural and spiritual worlds. I have expanded beyond plant life to include portraiture, illustration and animal studies. I also design accessories and home furnishings – my ultimate dream is to build an interactive environment. Even though I returned to visual arts to escape my editorial past, I have found that my words inform my pictures, and vice versa.
I have embraced printmaking out of my love for image making as a process, an ongoing experiment with color, texture, pattern and words. I continue to explore how text is incorporated into my depictions. I utilize photographic elements, some of which I inherited from my father’s catalog of vintage images, along with other techniques to explore themes of alienation, isolation, transformation and healing.