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Renowned folk artist Eric Dowdle to paint Butte for new puzzle

eric dowdle.jpg
Posted at 5:27 PM, Jan 09, 2024

BUTTE — Butte is a city so full of unique character that it should be a work of art, and that’s why a renowned folk artist commissioned by the city to paint a portrait of Butte said it’s going to be a challenge to get all that character into one painting.

“I would have to search high and low for something this interesting right here, in any city, and you got 40 vignettes like this,” said artist Eric Dowdle.

Dowdle was given a tour of Butte recently to get inspiration for his painting. He wasn’t disappointed.

“And to have the rigs on the hill and the mining right in the middle of town, this is as unique as it gets and it really tells a western story. So, I felt immediately—I immediately texted my staff and was like, ‘This is going to be one of our funnest paintings,'” he said.

The Butte Chamber of Commerce and BLDC commissioned Dowdle to paint a picture of the city that will be converted into 15,000 puzzles for sale.

“I think this will be a high-demand item that will really drive a lot of interest in the community,” said Tom Cronnelly with the Butte Chamber of Commerce’s executive board.

Dowdle, who has done puzzles like this for 500 cities around the world was given a tour of Butte’s landmarks and given insights into Butte’s colorful history.

“If I don’t get this side or this information, the soul of a painting doesn’t exist,” said Dowdle.

Sales from the puzzle will raise money to be used to promote and market Butte.

“We have such a historic community and such a story to tell and Eric Dowdle is that artist that's able to tell that story for us,” said Butte Chief Executive J.P. Gallagher.

The puzzles are expected to be completed by July.