ReVerse Butcher is a multi-disciplinary artist with focuses in making unique artist’s books, collages, visual art, VR art in Tilt Brush, writing & performance. She will use any medium necessary to engage and subvert reality until it is less dull and oppressive. When she grows up she wants to be a well-read recluse. She currently lives in Melbourne, Australia.
ReVerse Butcher graduated from Southern Cross University in 2012 with a bachelor of Cultural Studies, majoring in Creative Writing. Before attending university as mature aged student, she had completed two international tours as a performance poet with musical & multimedia tendencies.
Having developed an abject hatred for the Beat poets & their misogynist culture while travelling with Daevid Allen (who was perhaps one of the only legitimate Australian Beat poets) & his various bands (Gong, University of Errors, Magic Brothers etc) in her mid-20s, ReVerse Butcher turned the Beat Poet bible, Jack Kerouac's 'On the Road' into one giant Queer Feminist sigil in the form of an altered artists book. It was in this era in Melbourne where ReVerse Butcher met Sarah Curro.
But, ReVerse Butcher started her creative career as a poet in Queensland, helping to form the original lineup of Speedpoets (Brisbane, QLD) in 2001. She joined the Synaptic Graffiti Collective in 2003, to work on various poetry/multimedia projects together. She was on the organising committee for the Queensland Poetry festival 2003-2004, and both featured and MCed some sessions both years. In 2005, she was one half of poetry-rock band 'The Electric Afterglow', which featured the first sets of performances where she merged poetry, music and visual projection together.
In 2006 her collaborative poetry film with Daevid Allen, 'Conscience Strike' screened at the Portobello Film Festival, the Byron Bay Community Centre and various events in Brisbane. ReVerse Butcher, along with Miss Kate and Bob Mudd, also ran weekly poetry readings at the Checocha Cafe (Brisbane). That same dynamic trio initially founded ContraVerse, an open mic event at the Tongue and Groove Cafe (Brisbane), and ReVerse Butcher went on to produce and MC that event from 2006-2008, later resurrecting it in many different cities.
In 2007-2009 ReVerse Butcher joined Gold Coast punk outfit The Molotov as a second vocalist. In 2007-2010 ReVerse Butcher joined Trypswytch, a psychedelic noise experimental band in Northern NSW as a poet/performer/visual projectionist.
In 2008, ReVerse Butcher embarked on her Texas Poetry Massacre Tour performing for audiences in various American cities, with a full month in Texas. She also featured at Loose Muse in London, edited and designed 'Gong Dreaming 2', a autobiographic artists book by Daevid Allen, and was a backing vocalist on Gong's '2032' album. She performed at, but was banned from afterwards, the Woodford Folk Festival for being 'too provocative'.
2009 saw her first self-published collection of poetry, launched at three separate events in London (UK), Brisbane (QLD), and Lismore (NSW). ReVerse Butcher toured the UK & Europe singing backing vocals for psychedelic punk band, "Daevid Allen's: The University of Errors". She produced a videopoem called 'Downriver' which was published on the Synaptic Graffiti Collective's DVD release, 'Memory'.
2010-2012 ReVerse Butcher undertook her university studies, while also professionally producing book design, typesetting and editing assistance for several poetry collections, including "Backwards: Selected Poems 2010-1976" and "Poetry Bay" by David Hallet, and the posthumous publication "The Collected Poems of Geraldine Bigelow". She also self published her second collection of poetry, "A Bird in the Bush is Worth Two Hands". While working as an events co-ordinator for Southern Cross University's student union, as part of a fabulously weird collective of artists and student activists, helped to organise 'Burn the Man', an music event where a giant wooden effigy was legitimately, with permission and all proper precautions, set on actual fire on the very small, very regional university's oval.
In 2012 she won the People's Choice Award at the Nimbin Performance Poetry World Cup, after also having been disqualified in the first round. She won July's Caravan Slam in Sydney with the same set. She was a featured reader at the Gold Coast Writer's Festival, helped organised two pop-up protest poetry events in Brisbane in response to the cancellation of the Premier's Award for Poetry. ReVerse Butcher also edited and designed Daevid Allen's final poetry collection 'Love is a Careless Sea'.
In 2013-2015, ReVerse Butcher produced many poetry, music and performance events (including another incarnation of ContraVerse) at Hares & Hyenas Bookshop (Melbourne). She featured at events in the Midsumma & Melbourne Fringe festivals, she featured at 'Speak UP!' at the Incinerator Gallery (Moonee Ponds), and was a feature poet for melbournespokenword.com at the National Gallery of Victoria, and at La Mama Poetica in April 2014. She and John Stevens formed poetry-noise band Slow Process, and they recorded several independent releases.
In 2015 ReVerse Butcher teamed up with Kylie Supski to write & perform in 'the 5th C', one section of the "10Cs", an immersive theatre production for MetaNoia Live Works at the Mechanics Institute. This show ran from June 17-27.
2016 saw ReVerse Butcher perform at White Night, and also be featured in the "All You Need Is Love" exhibition as part of the 'In-Bed Project'. She completed her 4 year altered artists book project 'On The Rod', and lovingly placed 2500+ postcards with her poems on them in random library books (without their knowledge or consent) around Melbourne. She then met Sarah Curro, and completed the altered Spur violin.
In 2017 she was included in her first group art exhibition, 'Hidden Agenda' at Trocadero Art Space (Footscray), and in 2018 she collaboratively created 'Imaginarium', a performance poetry, music and live virtual reality performance (Brisbane, QLD) along with Bernard Housten, Le Go Girl, and Andrew Hoadley. She finally published 'On The Rod' in 2018 as a limited edition artist's book, and an eBook.
In 2019, she produced and directed 'John Cage's: Lecture on Nothing', collaborating again with Kylie Supski (performer) and Roger Alsop (8 channel sound composition) for an immersive theatrical performance piece. Having also contributed the visual projections, she re-imagined the original 1950's text as a giant 'spatial erasure' poem by using Virtual Reality (VR) art program Tilt Brush to create an immersive landscape of the links and voids between Cage's original ideas and their wild new multimedia interpretation. The music was performed at the Prague Quadrennial, and an excerpted performance was given at the Australian Computer Music Conference (Melbourne). The full performance will be presented at the Stephen McLaughlan Gallery in December 2019, and at the Daylesford Convent Gallery in March 2020.
PRESS & REVIEWS "FOR ON THE ROD, AN ARTISTS BOOK"
"The respect I have for the ideological underpinning of this book is enough to make me want to rain copies of it from rooftops and stand outside libraries shaking pages in the faces of passersby. But more so than that - the work is beautiful.
The paintings and collages are arresting; the verse clever, subversive and impeccably placed. On The Rod stands out not only as a wonderfully transformative critique of the original work; but as an impressive artwork that is just as engaging on a visual level as it is on a cerebral deep-dive. Each page is both its own artwork and a part of a cohesive, cartwheeling narrative delivered with more of the stream-of-consciousness dream-state that was beloved in the original."