The Lyon Printing Museum and the Fondation Marc Jurt pay tribute to the great draftsman, printmaker and Swiss painter, who died in 2006. Professor at the College de Saussure and an avid traveller, Marc Jurt met Michel Butor, a writer he admired, and began a collaborative work. The museum presents some fifty paintings, regarded as the highlights of his production produced between 1994 and 1995.
Collaboration is a vital aspect of Butor’s oeuvre, and his work with visual artists, which in a way began with a very early (1945) piece on Max Ernst, continued and grew, encompassing words about, words to go alongside, and ultimately words within the visual works. The list of artists with whom he collaborated in this way is lengthy – there are around 200 – and includes Alechinsky, Starisky, Kolar, Maccheroni, Monory (see Elinor Miller’s book Prisms & Rainbows for more about three of these). Butor chooses to make his home close to a border (between France and Switzerland) and the idea of crossing or blurring frontiers is key to his ‘oeuvres croisées’.