For the love of all things vintage, clever, designed, and/or delicious, we celebrate objects and rituals in all their glory!

4.03.2009

No Butts About It!

We just picked up these incredible original prints by Northwest artist Walton Butts at a local rummage sale. We've come across small items of his stuff before, but never such a great a collection of prints. We just had to buy them all up because he has this incredible way with color, texture and pattern in depicting scenes near and dear to our Seattle home. I haven't been able to find much info on him beyond that he worked out of the Washington State in the 60's, 70s, and 80s.

A pair of like prints in different colors:


A whimsical beach scene with clam diggers...great depth


A mythical tree on the beach

21 comments:

Wooly Bison said...

I must see all of these!

me melodia said...

What a score.

Anonymous said...

I just came to own two of his paintings/prints. I was trying to research more about him. Have you found any more about this NW artist?

Anonymous said...

Walton lived in Hoquiam, WA. He was an art teacher for several years until he was able to create his art full time. He passed away in 1996.

He enjoyed the serigraph process because it forced him to look and think in layers.

You have some nice pieces. He was prolific and there are many others out there. In my opinion it is horribly undervalued.

Jean said...

thank you for sharing that. I'm surprised how little people charged of his prints! We got an amazing deal because I think people don't really know that much about him.... but you can tell it was a total work of art since it was so well thought out. every print was intricately layered and well composed....and just beautiful.

Anonymous said...

Walton's son, Steven, also did serigraphs for a little while. When Walton passed away, Steven did the annual calendar piece for about 5 years. He then tired of it and is now a graphic artist in Seattle.

Jean said...

how neat! did you know them personally? I'd love to see his son's work, too!

Anonymous said...

I have owned a piece of his work for about twenty/twenty five years titled "Sailing Home". I love it, and all of his work that I have been able to see.

Anonymous said...

I found another Goodwill treasure, one of Walton's intensly
blue small WA ferry, entitled ARRIVAL.

would love to know more about it. any thoughts. ET

Liz said...

Bought a framed Butts print today titled Crossing (a ferry with a pier and birds in browns and oranges, very Northwest) for $10 at a tag sale! Couldn't resist it although I'd never heard of the artist. I'm delighted.

L&G Studio said...

That's fantastic! I'm shocked that he's not as famous as he should! The colors on every print are just amazing aren't they?

Anonymous said...

I just purchased an orange/brown Butts print titled "Totems".
I was not familiar with his work, much like Bennett. I love it!

Jean said...

Wow, that's great that so many people are finding these!

Anonymous said...

I have 2 prints of Walton Butts one is called Towering Totems orange and brown in color and the other one is called Raven color blue and black

Karl said...

I pulled a signed Walton Butts framed print out of someone's trash in Baltimore MD. Butts wrote "SINGING TREES" in the left bottom margin and signed it in the right bottom margin. The wood frame resembles bambo and is painted dull gold. "CH 1363" is written on the brown backing paper. Does anyone know more about this print?

Anonymous said...

A friend customer gave me a painting signed by Walton Butts called Clam Diggers. I saw the same painting in this column, but mine was used with different colors. Anyone know more info on his artwork?

Jody Dunn said...

I was just about to give up two of his pieces to the Goodwill. I haven't room for them and yet they were the first art my ex and I had framed. The clamdiggers and one of a dock with fishing boats in the background and seagulls in the foreground. I guess I will put them back in storage for another 30 years.

Anonymous said...

I have a Butts called sailing patterns It doesn't do anything for me. Whats it worth? Dave. championwdwrks@hotmail.ca

Jerry Smith said...

We have a signed piece of his in the office I work in in Tacoma. The title of the piece is "Beachcomber". Very nice!

Steve C. said...

My mother, Bette Callihan, was a painter and watercolorist in Aberdeen in the late 1950s, and close friends with Walton Butts, Uldine Burgon, Perry Acker, Elton Bennett, and other artists who gravitated to Washington's coast.

Anonymous said...

I have a great story about Walton Butts...
It was 1985, a sunny Bay Area day on my way home from work driving up Alum Rock road when I ran over a large black portfolio that was laying in the middle of the road.
Recognizing what it was, I pulled over and rescued it from being destroyed. When I got home I opened it up and found somewhere around 22 original signed serigraphs of his. I still have them and it also had a one sheet marketing piece write up of him and a catalog of his prints.
I did my best at that time (before the internet) by calling the alumni department at the WSU where he went to college. But they had no records of him and I had no idea what city he was living in at the time although I did call information in Seattle. Years later I did a search and somehow got his number, which I called promptly! His wife answered and I told her of the portfolio and how it came into my belonging. She let me know that Walton had passed but she did recall the time he lost it. I offered to return them to her and she graciously requested I keep them. So there's my ultra-cool Walton Butts story!