7. RI Housing

Margie Butler

House by the Sea and Room for Change

Acrylic and collage on board

About the Work

As a child I was always setting up house.

Now my art documents and plays with notions about setting up a life.

The panels I have made for the RI Housing site place my personal notions about home against some of the more unsettling forces that challenge people’s sense of security out in the world. By depicting colorful post-Katrina houses on stilts, collaging in photos of dwellings left in war zones, and using a yellowed city planning map, I can weave my own story into a larger landscape. One panel plays off my ideal of living by the ocean despite the problematic reality that sea level is rising. The other panel contrasts the outline of an empty, open center space and comfortable chair against antiquated wallpaper, urban rooflines and bombed out towers. The pieces deal with the subtle tensions between a desire to be anchored and the keen understanding that nothing is gauranteed.

About the Artist

Margie Butler’s art amasses layers of personal narrative to depict a visual vocabulary of female space. Generally working in smaller ephemeral pieces, Margie sought to expand her scale for the chance to participate in Providence Art Windows. Part of her art making is the collection of clippings, objects and stories that then become game pieces and launch pads for the collaged landscapes. The volume of what is accumulated prompts a never-ending process of editing and re-arranging. Each piece presents the chance of finding possibility and pleasure in the chaos.

Margie completed her MFA at The Art Institute of Boston in 2006 and has exhibited at The University Gallery/UMass Dartmouth Star Store, Artworks!, 5 Traverse, and Y.E.S. Gallery. In addition to her studio practice, Margie consults for national clients and arts organizations on marketing projects. Locally Margie has worked closely with the City’s Department of Art, Culture + Tourism to launch the art advocacy initiative Buy Art Providence.

To learn more about the artist, please go to www.margiebutlerart.com.

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