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James Butterwick and Modernism Inc

Ukrainian and European Fine Arts
We are a private, by-invitation-only gallery situated in the heart of Mayfair with a stock of pictures by late-19th, early-20th century Ukrainian and European artists - we also provide a full authentication service of any work of the Avant-Garde. In addition, we sell items by Western Masters and Soviet non-conformists.

Insights From The Exhibitor

James Butterwick began collecting and selling Ukrainian and Russian Art in 1985 and has established himself as one of the world’s leading dealers and experts in the field. During the 1990s he lived in Moscow, becoming the only foreign member of the Russian Society of Private Collectors, forming collections, contributing to museum exhibitions and reading lectures on the history of Russian Art. In 2008 James became the only foreign member of International Confederation of Antique and Art Dealers of Russia and the CIS, and in 2013 joined the Society of London Art Dealers, the leading group of its kind.

In 2015 James became to first dealer in Ukrainian and Russian Art to be invited to exhibit at TEFAF, Maastricht Art Fair, showing a collection of works by Avant Garde painters, including the Ukrainian, Oleksandr Bohomazov (1880-1930), seven of whose works he sold to the Kröller Müller Museum in the Netherlands. Following this, James exhibited at TEFAF, New York in 2017, and continues to exhibit at Maastricht.

A fluent Russian speaker, James lectures around the world on issues of authenticity that surround the Ukrainian and Russian Avant Garde. He has spoken at the Tretyakov Gallery, the Museum of Russian Impressionism in Moscow, New York and Cambridge Universities, the Kiev Centre of International Relations and, in January 2021 he spoke at the seminal exhibition ‘Original or Fake’, at the Ludwig Museum, Cologne. He further lectures on Bohomazov, the Lost Futurist of Ukraine. A regular on radio and television, James had his own slot of Radio Matryoshka in London and featured in the BBC programme ‘Fake or Fortune’ in 2014.

James has written extensively on Ukrainian and Russian Art, has published sixteen exhibition catalogues and leant extensively to museum exhibitions. In February 2020 James won a landmark court case in Milan, Italy. Sued by organisers for having described an exhibition of 67 dubious paintings in Mantua as ‘an absolute disgrace’, James was utterly exonerated with the judge describing his comments as being based on, ‘proven recognised competence and experience.’

James acts as a source of museum-quality paintings with flawless provenance from both the Ukrainian, Russian and European School, and has access to a wide range of leading experts, private collections and museums. Before the war, from 2013, he travelled regularly to Ukraine, opening a representative office headed by Katya Vozianova in 2018. James’s office is in Brook Street yards from Bond Street, the hub of the art world.


On view
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Three Ukrainian Artists
online exclusive
Mar 9, 2022
"Alexander Bogomazov (1880-1930): The Lost Futurist"
Online Exclusive
Oct 1–Nov 30, 2020
"Yakov Chernikhov 1889 - 1951: The Soviet Experiment"
Online Exclusive
Oct 28–Nov 28, 2020
"Yakov Chernikov 1889 - 1951: The Soviet Piranesi"
TEFAF Maastricht
Mar 7–15, 2020
“Alexander Bogomazov 1880-1930: The Lost Futurist”
TEFAF Maastricht
Mar 16–24, 2019
"Boris Kosarev: The Kharkov Laboratory 1918-1929"
TEFAF Maastricht
Mar 8–18, 2018
"Bitter Harvest: Russian and Ukrainian Avant-Garde 1890-1934".
TEFAF New York
Oct 28–Nov 1, 2017
"From Utopia to Tragedy. Ukrainian Avant-Garde 1914-1934".
TEFAF Maastricht
Mar 10–May 19, 2017
"Alexander Bogomazov 1880-1930"
TEFAF Maastricht
Mar 11–20, 2016
"Time, Forward! Russian and Ukrainian Art 1890 - 1930"
TEFAF Maastricht
Mar 13–22, 2015


  • Oleksandr Bohomazov
  • Yakov Chernikhov
  • Boris Kosarev
  • Maria Sinyakova
  • Ivan Turetsky
  • Mikola Bilous
  • Yevgeny Petrov
  • Mikhail Vrubel
  • Natalia Goncharova
  • Aristarkh Lentulov
  • Solomon Nikritin
  • Sergei Yutkevich