“James Butterwick, the London collector and dealer – is one of the leading authorities on Russian Art in the West today.” ART.RU
James Butterwick began collecting and selling Russian Art in 1985 and has established himself as one of the world’s leading experts. He moved to Moscow in 1994, becoming the only foreign member of the Russian Society of Private Collectors. He forms collections, takes part in museum exhibitions and reads lectures on Russian Art, including at the Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow in 2013. In 2008 James became the only foreign member of International Confederation of Antique and Art Dealers of Russia and the CIS and in 2013 was likewise voted into the Society of London Art Dealers, the most prestigious group of its kind.
James acts as a source of museum quality paintings with flawless provenance of both the Russian and European School and has access to all the leading experts, private collections and museums in any area of the arts. He travels regularly to Russia and Kazakhstan where, in October 2013, he opened an exhibition of leading Impressionist paintings in an exclusive partnership with “VILED”.
In 2015 James became the first gallery dealing in early 20th century Russian Art to be invited to exhibit at TEFAF, Maastricht.
At the end of 2013 James became the Art Advisor for Oracle Capital Group, www.orcap.co.uk.
His private gallery is in London, he speaks fluent Russian and personally guarantees the authenticity of his pictures.
James Butterwick was born in 1962 in Maidenhead, 30 miles west of London. His grandfather Cyril Butterwick was Head of Silver at Sotheby’s, and his godfather Peregrine Pollen President of Sotheby’s Parke Burnet in New York. After taking A-levels in History, French and History of Art at Eton, James studied Fine Art at the University of East Anglia. In 1985 he made his first trip to Russia: the start of a love affair initially inspired by the ‘romantic lyricism of Turgenev.’ In 1985/6 he studied Russian Language & Literature in Minsk and Pyatigorsk before graduating in Russian & Fine Art from Bristol University in 1987 and embarking on his art world career:
– joins Sotheby’s on graduate trainee scholarship
– acquires first Russian picture (a Bakst figure-drawing)
– joins Roy Miles’ Russian art gallery on Berkeley Square
– teams up with London dealer in Russian art David Harrington
– becomes independent Russian art dealer, operating in South Kensington
– moves to Moscow (‘where the action was’) trading under his own name
– helps assemble extensive collection of Russian art for Sun Group
– starts own collection with works by Vrubel, Serov, Volkov & Grigoriev
– elected only foreign member of the Russian Society of Private Collectors
– appointed Head of Russian Sales for London-based silver & jewellery firm Asprey;
– extensive travel to Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan & Russia
– returns to Moscow and re-launches art dealership, acquiring works by Matyushin, Larionov, Goncharova, Bogomazov, Volkov, Rodchenko & others
– relocates his art business to London
– becomes only foreign member of International Confederation of Antique & Art Dealers of Russia & the CIS
– opens 120m2 purpose-built gallery in Hammersmith
– admitted to the prestigious Society of London Art Dealers
– opens exhibition of leading Impressionist paintings in Kazakhstan
– lectures at Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow
– Art Advisor to the Oracle Capital Group (sponsors of Houghton Revisited exhibition in conjunction with St Petersburg’s Hermitage Museum)
– first dealer specializing in early 20th Century Russian Art to take part in TEFAF Maastricht, the world’s top art and antiques fair
– returns to TEFAF with a highly-acclaimed Bogomazov solo show
– James’ wife Natasha becomes owner of Russian Art+Culture website
March – ‘From Utopia to Tragedy’ Ukrainian Avant-Garde 1914-34 exhibition at TEFAF Maastricht
May – debut at TEFAF New York with ‘Bitter Harvest’ exhibition.
March – ‘Boris Kosarev. The Kharkov Laboratory 1918-1929’ exhibition at TEFAF Maastricht
Sold to the following Institutions:
Arkansas Art Center, Little Rock
Kroller Muller Museum, Otterlo, Netherlands
In his spare time James enjoys shooting, fishing and ‘bestriding the open spaces of Norfolk in search of peace and quiet.’ A lifelong supporter of The Arsenal, he seldom misses a game at the Emirates – however hectic his schedule.