Once upon a time… That’s how fables start and that how the story of Alserkal Avenue begins as well, the Art District of Dubai born in 2007 in an industrial zone and which, today, is one of the pillars of the city’s cultural life. This vivacious neighbourhood, with its numerous galleries flanked by cafés, dance schools, restaurants, design shops and photo studios has always nourished an atmosphere of creativity, showing a real knack for growth and continuous evolution, even as far as its spaces are concerned. One of the latest is Concrete, inaugurated in 2017, the first building in the United Arab Emirates designed by Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA), the Architecture Studio co-founded in 1975 by multiple-award-winning Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas. It was conceived as a multifunctional space, destined to host international art exhibitions and events as well as those of design, fashion and performances. 1250 square metres, the interior completely lined with cement, while from the ceilings, which are eight metres high, natural light enters through skylights. Its rotating walls allow the spaces to be custom-fitted to the wealth of various events which pass through. Right in the middle of Alserkal, Concrete fits right in, bringing something fresh and inviting to an already remarkable part of town.
Inspired by Matisse, Butzer claims that his painting exclusively follows a "senseless vision of destiny" and his paintings are an antidote to the unquestioned world we live in today with its vile social divisions.