Artist: Werner Büttner
Title: Werner Büttner: Something very blond comes to town
Author: Kenny Schachter and Werner Büttner
Publisher: Marlborough Gallery, Inc.
Book Format: Hardcover, 13 ½ x 9 ½ inches, 84 pages, 90 color plates
Something very blond comes to town is the artist’s first show with the gallery to integrate these various tendrils of his practice in a more detailed illustration of his broader conceptual concerns. If we consider Büttner’s production to be concerned with his refraction of a continuous information flow—from ancient history and philosophy to current events to goings on outside his studio window—Something very blond comes to town expresses this fact through a variety of source materials and approaches. The oil paintings tackle life’s big existential questions via an acute art historical lens, while the sculpture and thrift store paintings rely on chance encounters with readymade materials to provoke a narrative. Together, the works establish a wry worldview that displays a professorial depth of knowledge and a comedian’s dark sense of humor.
The exhibition is accompanied by a catalog with an essay by Kenny Schachter, excerpted below.
“Werner Büttner was an early hero of mine, not merely for the fact we both studied law before lapsing, nor because of his amazing late 1970s collaborations with Martin Kippenberger and Albert Oehlen, but rather due to his exploits as a key participant in a group of major postwar, post-Beuys-Richter-Polke German artists. Don’t be fooled by his avowed dismissals of technical aptitude—Büttner’s brand of casual self-deprecation and nonchalance masks an artist relentlessly at it.”