RUSS & IGGY’S ART ALPHABET
An Illustrated Book Celebrating the Life and Legacy of Russ Butler
“Art imitates life,” as the saying goes. Whether heard in a recording of a Beethoven symphony, seen in a heartfelt film, or experienced through the brushstrokes of a curious painter, the myriad facets of the human experience that make life so enchanting and beautiful can live on through artistic expression.
Russ Butler was a professional artist and teacher whose life’s mission was bringing art and beauty to the world. Accompanied by Iggy, his Jack Russell Terrier and faithful companion, Russ conveyed a sense of wonder and joy in his paintings that illustrate the wonderful life he so wished to share with people. Although Russ and Iggy have both passed on, their art, as well as the impact they had on the lives of their loved ones, live on. That’s the simple but profound premise of Russ & Iggy’s Art Alphabet, written by Victoria Looseleaf, with drawings by J.T. Steiny.
Looseleaf was friends with the artist/muralist/designer Russ Butler for many years before he passed away from cancer in June, 2017. They had often talked of collaborating on a book, but their respective careers intervened. An award-winning arts journalist with a zest for life and art, Looseleaf set out to create the story she and Butler had longed to tell.
“Knowing Russ for many years was one of the greatest privileges of my life. Concurrently, his passion for life was intoxicating and his belief that art could help heal the world was a gift to all who encountered him. Russ was a beloved figure in his community and an advocate for arts education in the schools. This book, infused with his spirit, is his legacy.” – Victoria Looseleaf