Deborah Butterfield  (American, 1949) 

whitespace
Deborah Butterfield (American, b. May 7, 1949) is a renowned sculptor, known for sculpting horses from materials like wood and metal. Butterfield was born in San Diego, CA, on the same day as the 75th running of the Kentucky Derby, a fact that she claims to be the source of inspiration for her tendency to sculpt horses. Manuel Neri (American, b.1930), a sculptor renowned for sculpting the female form, mentored Butterfield, and the latter has claimed that this is why she does not dwell on sculptures of the female form.

Examples of Butterfield's works include Lalapa (2011), Palomino (1981), and Blanket Saddle (1972). Butterfield attended San Diego State College, in San Diego, CA, from 1966 to 1968, and also attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, in Skowhegan, ME, in 1972. Butterfield received her Bachelor's degree and an MFA from the University of California in Davis, CA, in 1971 and 1973 respectively. She holds an Honorary Doctorate of Fine Arts from Montana State University in Bozeman, MT (1998), and another from Rocky Mountain College in Billings, MT (1997).

Butterfield only works during winter, and hence each of her works takes some time to finish, usually in the range of three to five years. Butterfield's work exudes an Abstract narrative elegance that, together with the colorful forms of her works, has made people compare her to John Chamberlain (American, 1927–2011). Butterfield has received numerous awards, including a National Endowment for the Arts Individual Artist Fellowship, an American Academy of Achievement Award, and a Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship.

Butterfield has participated in a number of exhibitions including those held at The Sacramento Valley at San Francisco State College in San Francisco, CA, in 1972,the Israel Museum in Jerusalem, Israel, in 1981, and the Greg Kucera Galleryin Seattle, WA, in 2008. Her public collections are housed in different places, including Meijer Sculpture Gardens in Grand Rapids, MI, Yale University in New Haven, CT, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, NY. Deborah Butterfield is represented by Zolla/Lieberman Gallery in Chicago, IL, the Greg Kucera Gallery in Seattle, WA, and La Louver in Los Angeles, CA. Butterfield now lives and works in a studio in Hawaii and a ranch in Bozeman, MT.

Find Deborah Butterfield artworks for sale worldwide, artworks that sold at auction, a detailed biography, and more information on the artist below.
envelope Get email alerts about this artist!  
Artworks for sale (24)
In Art Galleries (25)
Dealers selling (11)
Dealers Buying (1)

Sold Artworks
In Past Auctions (61)

Calendar
Exhibitions (6)

artnet Magazine
Articles (2)

More Information
Biography
Monographs
artnet Analytics Reports
Market Reports
* paid service

Artworks for sale (24)

View All   

Deborah Butterfield, Walking Stick

 

Deborah Butterfield
Walking Stick
1994

Heather James Fine Art
Deborah Butterfield, Rockford

 

Deborah Butterfield
Rockford
2013

Greg Kucera Gallery
Deborah Butterfield, Koai'a

 

Deborah Butterfield
Koai'a
2013

Greg Kucera Gallery
Deborah Butterfield, Willow

 

Deborah Butterfield
Willow
2013

Greg Kucera Gallery
Deborah Butterfield, HO'OPONA (Faithful)

 

Deborah Butterfield
HO'OPONA (Faithful)
2013

Greg Kucera Gallery
Deborah Butterfield, RED FOREST

 

Deborah Butterfield
RED FOREST
2013

Greg Kucera Gallery
Deborah Butterfield, Untitled

 

Deborah Butterfield
Untitled
Helene Wasserman Fine Art
Deborah Butterfield, Evergreen

 

Deborah Butterfield
Evergreen
2012

Gallery Paule Anglim
Deborah Butterfield, Yellow River

 

Deborah Butterfield
Yellow River
1984

Heather James Fine Art
Past auction results (61)  View All
Deborah Butterfield, Horse

 

Deborah Butterfield
Horse
patinated bronze

 

View Details
Deborah Butterfield, Conure

 

Deborah Butterfield
Conure, 2007
welded found painted steel

 

View Details
Deborah Butterfield, Doney

 

Deborah Butterfield
Doney, 1996
bronze

 

View Details

1949   Born May 7, in San Diego, CA
1966 - 1968   San Diego State College, San Diego, CA
1970 - 1972   BFA, University of California, Davis, CA
1972   Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Maine, Scholarship
1972   Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Maine, Purchase Award for Sculpture and Student Jury Award for Sculpture
1973   MFA, University of California, Davis, CA
1977   National Endowment for the Arts Individual Artist Fellowship
1980   John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship
1980   National Endowment for the Arts Individual Artist Fellowship
1992   UC Davis and Cal Aggie Alumni Association, Davis, California, Citation for Excellence Award
1993   American Academy of Achievement - Golden Plate Award
1997   Rocky Mountain College, Billings, Montana; Honorary Doctor of Fine Arts
1998   Montana State University, Bozeman, Montana; Honorary Doctorate of Fine Arts
  Lives and works in Bozeman, Montana and Hawaii
2012   New Sculptures, LA Louver, Venice, CA (solo)
2012   Essence: The Horses of Deborah Butterfield, Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Pak (solo)
2011   Greg Kucera Gallery
2010   Grounds for Sculpture, Hamilton, NJ (solo)
2008   The Horse, American Museum of Natural History, New York, NY
2008   Greg Kucera Gallery, Seattle, WA
2007   Deborah Butterfield: Horses, Nevada Museum of Art, Reno, NV (solo)
2007   Figge Art Museum, Davenport, IA (solo)
2006   LA Louver, Venice, CA (solo)
2006   Gallery Paule Anglim, San Francisco, CA (solo)
2006   Hunter Museum of American Art, Chattanooga, TN (solo)
2006   Tucson Museum of Art, AZ (solo)
2005   Greg Kucera Gallery, Seattle, WA
2005   Hunter Museum of American Art, Chattanooga, TN
2005   Zolla/Lieberman Gallery, Chicago, IL
2005   Norton Museum of Art, Palm Beach, FL (solo)
2004   Gallery Paule Anglim, San Francisco, CA
2004   The Contemporary Museum of Art, Honolulu, HI
2004   Roberta Lieberman: A Sharp Eye: An Art Dealer’s 40 Year Journey, Evanston Art Center, Evanston, IL
2003   Expanded Horizons, Yellowstone Art Museum, Billings, MT
2003   Deborah Butterfield: Recent Sculpture, Edward Thorp Gallery, NY, NY
2003   Deborah Butterfield, Greg Kucera Gallery, Seattle, WA
2002   Sculpture, LA Louver Gallery, Venice, CA
2002   Fast Forward II, Berkeley Art Museum, University of California, Berkeley, CA
2001   The Wild West, Arken Museum of Modern Art, Ishoj, Denmark
2000   International Festival of Contemporary Sculpture Monte-Carlo, Monaco
2000   Edward Thorpe Gallery, New York, NY
1999   Zolla/Lieberman Gallery, Chicago, IL
1999   Animal, Musée Bourdelle, Paris, France
1997   Two in Montana: Deborah Butterfield and John Buck, Sculpture and Woodblock Prints, San Jose Museum of Art, San Jose, CA
1997   Greg Kucera Gallery, Seattle, WA
1996   San Diego Museum of Art, San Diego, CA
1996   Outdoor Exhibition, Grant Park, Chicago, IL
1994   Gallery Paule Anglim, San Francisco, CA
1992   Lowe Art Museum, University of Miami, Coral Gables, FL
1989   Gallery Paule Anglim, San Francisco, CA
1989   The Denver Art Museum, Denver, CO
1989   The Nature of the Beast, The Hudson River Museum, Yonkers, NY
1987   Edward Thorp Gallery, New York, NY
1987   The Bay Area Collects: A Focus on Sculpture, Rena Bransten Gallery, San Francisco, CA
1987   Standing Ground:Sculpture by American Women, The Contemporary Arts Center, Cinncinati, OH
1987   Whitney Museum at Philip Morris Sculpture Court, New York, NY
1986   Call of the Wild, Rhode Island School of Design, Museum of Art, Providence, RI
1986   Contemporary Art Center, Honolulu, HI
1985   The Horse in 20th Century Art, Nicola Jacobs Gallery, London, England
1985   Iowa Collects, Des Moines Art Center, Des Moines, IA
1984   O.K. Harris, New York, NY
1984   Naturlich, Matthews Hamilton Gallery, Philadelphia, PA
1983   Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art, Winston-Salem, NC
1983   Oakland Museum, Oakland, CA
1982   Mayor Gallery, London, England
1982   100 Years of California Sculpture, The Oakland Museum Oakland, CA
1981   Isreal Museum, Jerusalem, Isreal
1981   ARCO Center for the Visual Arts, Los Angeles, CA
1980   3-D Invitational Exhibit, Carnegie-Mellon University, Pittsburg, PA
1979   The Decade in Review: Selections from the 1970's, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY
1978   The Presence of Nature, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY
1977   Seventy-sixth Exhibition of Chicago and Vicinity, Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL
1977   Zolla/Lieberman Gallery, Chicago, IL
1976   Madison Art Center, Madison, WI
1974   Two Sculptors: Deborah Butterfield and Rudy Serra, University Museum, Berkeley, CA
1973   The Great Variety of Northern California Art, Pan Gallery, Chico, CA
1972   First Southwest Region Exhibition, American Craft Council Gallery, New York, NY
1972   The Sacramento Valley, San Francisco State College, San Francisco, CA
  The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY
  The Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, IL
  The Nevada Museum of Art, Reno, NV
  Palm Springs Desert Museum, Palm Springs, CA
  San Diego Museum of Art, San Diego, CA
  The University of Kentucky Art Museum, Lexington, KY
  Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY
  Yale University, New Haven, CT
  The Contemporary Museum, Honolulu, HI
  The Baltimore Museum of Art, Baltimore, MD
  Berkeley Art Museum, University of California, Berkeley, CA
  The Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, NY
  The Cincinnati Art Museum, Cincinnati, OH
  The Denver Art Museum, Denver, CO
  The Hirshhorn Museum & Sculpture Garden, Washington, DC
  The Institute of Contemporary Art, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond, VA
  Israel Museum, Jerusalem, Israel
  Meijer Sculpture Gardens, Grand Rapids, MI
2003    Gordon, Robert, et al. Horses: Deborah Butterfield. New York: Harry N. Abrams, 2003.
1992    Tucker, Marcia. The Art of Deborah Butterfield. San Francisco: Chronicle Books, 1992.