Exploring the Artistic Realm of Susanne Butcher, where emotions and experiences converge on canvas and in stoneware sculptures
an article written by Carmen Line Hust
Danish artist Susanne Butcher, born in 1966, invites us into the depths of her creative universe, where emotions, experiences, and an unyielding passion for self-expression converge on canvas and in stoneware sculptures. In an exclusive interview, Butcher shares her insights on the driving force behind her art, the development of her artistic vocabulary, and the dynamic evolution of her themes.
For Butcher, the impulse to create is innate—a seamless blending of brush, paint, and canvas, guided by raw emotions and a desire to convey the essence of her experiences. Her artistic journey transcends the confines of popularity or commercial success, focusing instead on the intimate connection forged between the viewer and her creations. Butcher finds joy in experimentation, pushing the boundaries of technique, and discovering new avenues for expression. Criticism, rather than discouraging, becomes a motivational force, providing insights into the underlying thoughts of her works.
As a keen observer since childhood, Butcher drew inspiration from various creative realms, envisioning a path where she could channel her passion into a lifelong profession. Despite initial challenges, she persevered, navigating through "normal" education and work before dedicating herself to full-time artistic pursuits.
Butcher's artistic vocabulary stems from a profound interest in human interactions and the exploration of ordinary yet essential aspects of life. Rejecting conventional norms, she forges her own path, seeking firsthand experiences over prescribed theories. Her works delve into the relational dynamics of life, capturing the nuances of human behavior, temperament, and curiosity. The conscious and subconscious elements coalesce in her figurative paintings and stoneware sculptures, inviting viewers to interpret and reflect.
While Butcher primarily works instinctively and dynamically, she has ventured into project-oriented endeavors, such as contributing to books about prisoners and participating in state-recognized exhibitions with specific themes. These projects, rooted in individual experiences and relationships, provide a unique framework for her artistic expression.
Canvas painting, drawing, and stoneware sculptures are Butcher's preferred media. These choices, made early in her artistic journey, allowed her to dive into creation without formal education, learning directly from her experiences. Despite experimenting with etching and lithography, these traditional forms remain integral to her artistic identity.
Butcher's creative process combines pre-thought ideas and spontaneous emergence. Each work tells a unique story, whether conceived as part of a series or born from individual reflections. She eschews conceptual constraints, ensuring that each piece stands alone, infused with authenticity and a sense of relief upon completion.
For Butcher, a compelling expression is paramount. Challenging established rules in color and composition, she seeks to create a personal connection with viewers. Her art aims to encapsulate the complexity of human experience, embracing imperfections and rejecting the notion of 'perfect' stories.
Throughout her life, Butcher has drawn inspiration from diverse artists and art forms, emphasizing the impact of personalities and ideas rather than specific works. During intense periods of creation, she intentionally avoids viewing others' works, immersing herself in the flow and seeking inspiration from the world around her, including music spanning various genres.
In the world of Susanne Butcher, art is a dynamic, evolving expression of the self—a journey into the heart of human experience, where imperfections and complexities coalesce to create a respite from the mundane. Her works, pulsating with life, challenge artistic norms, inviting viewers to join her in a celebration of the imperfect, the intense, and the boldly executed.