The Entrance to this exhibition is through this old-fashioned, double-fronted puppet shop. At the back there's a grotto full of illuminated things. Some are lit, some light up - some emit sound. Some pieces are liminal (portable portals), some retrospective (scrap books). None of them are toys. The vocabulary is metal and glass, photographs and film - the grammar is split infinitives and dangling participles. The language is colloquial, the content self-referential (the artist having lived long enough for the description 'autobiographical' to have lost its disparaging connotation). A muse, occasionally amusing, life model and clown Lesley Butler conglomerates found objects into talismans, amulets, mascots and fetishes where the whole becomes greater than the sum of the parts, an amalgamation which defines her art. The holes in the roof and floor of the exhibition space (not to mention the artists' teeth) will be on display, as they all need filling. So yes, all artworks will be for sale. Private view at Puppet Planet from 6pm on Friday the 26th of May, with a barbecue by Charlie's Kitchen (the weather forecast is fantastic!) Open daily 9am - 7pm, the exhibition closes with a workshop (displacement activity) until 6pm on Wednesday the 31st of May.
Lesley Butler Whilst studying for a French & German degree participated in Fluxus ‘happenings’ after meeting Josef Beuys and Nam June Paik in Duesseldorf in 1981. Co-founded the Brixton Art Gallery then organised the Performance Art Festival ‘Bartok in Brixton’ there in 1983. Member of Octetto Ironico with David Medalla, performed the ‘A to Z of Synoptic Realism’. British Council funded tour to Krefeld in 1988. After studying acting including ‘Commedia dell’Arte’ with Barry Grantham, then media with BFI and C4, worked on Independent films and as a Location Manager around Europe. In 1990 joined the BBC as Post Production Manager, then Assistant Producer for BBC2’s ‘Open Space’ series. A commissioned photographer, work toured, published and exhibited, including at the National Portrait Gallery in 1993. Made first ‘lookalike’ marionette in 1999 when performing with Bubble Theatre, commissions include TV. Trained as a Clown with Vivian Gladwell ’Nose to Nose'. Opened the shop ‘Puppet Planet’ in 2003 - short film ‘Pinocchio’ screened at festivals in the U.K. and U.S. Clown: ‘The Bag Lady’, Punch & Judy: ‘Professor Baguette’. Arts Council travel bursary to India 2012. Imternational group exhibition 'Toys (Are Us)' at The Crypt Gallery curated by Kosha Hussein and Chloé Dall'Olio 2015.