John W. Norton
Norton was born in Lockport, Illinois, the son of John Lyman Norton and Ada Clara Gooding Norton. The family ran the Norton & Co. of Lockport. Norton's study of law at Harvard University was broken off when the family's firm went bankrupt. Before, and after a period of living as a cowboy and enlisting with the Rough Riders, he studied art at the Art Institute of Chicago (1897, 1899–1901). He was influenced by the Armory Show and the Japanese printmaker Katsushika Hokusai.
Among his works are the landmark 1929 180-foot (55 m) long ceiling mural for the concourse of the Chicago Daily News Building (not currently installed in this building, which has been renamed), the Ceres mural in the Chicago Board of Trade Building (1930), his Tavern Club (Chicago) murals, his American Heritage Series at the Hamilton Park Field House, 513 W. 72nd St., Chicago, 4 murals at the St. Paul, Minnesota city hall, twelve murals comprising The History of Mankind (1923) at the Logan Museum of Anthropology at Beloit College, in Wisconsin, and his first major mural in the Cliff Dwellers Club (1909), where he was a founding member.
At the time of his death in Charleston, South Carolina of cancer, he was a popular and respected artist.
- William M. R. French memorial Gold Medal (1924)
- Norman Waite Harris Bronze Medal (1926)
- honorary Master of Fine Arts from the Art Institute of Chicago
- Gold Medal of Honor for Mural Painting from the Architectural League of New York (1931)
- Zimmer, John L. (2005–06) "Memories of John W. Norton's Mural Masterpiece," The Living Museum 67(4): 4-8.
- Gray, Mary Lackritz (2001) A Guide to Chicago's Murals. University Of Chicago Press.
- Tallmadge, Thomas and Tom Lea (1935) John W. Norton, American Painter. Lakeside Press: Chicago (privately printed).
- John Warner Norton (catalogue raisonné). Illinois State Museum.
- A discussion of the mounting of Ceres: http://aic.stanford.edu/jaic/articles/jaic24-01-002.html.
(JAIC 1984, Volume 24, Number 1, Article 2 (pp. 14 to 22) )
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