Helen Norton


Linton & Kay Galleries (Perth city)

14 November - 12 December 2012

We are currently living in the largest debt fuelled prosperity bubble in the history of the world. Many people and nations have been living beyond their means creating debt that cannot be sustained. Along with the uncertainty of the mining boom, this means that many believe there is no guarantee of prosperity for our children or grand children.

These contemporary issues of world debt and inheritance are explored in Helen Norton’s exhibition Prosperity, which will show at Linton & Kay Galleries. Set in the well-recognised landscape of the Swan River and the city of Perth, children are featured throughout the body of works as though an asset, sometimes suspended by helium filled balloons, dangerously led into obvious debt; sometimes standing firm, proud and hopeful for their future.

 “I was seeking a formal and even austere presentation of children, and found that images from the turn of the century and even the more recent dressing up of young girls as ornate show pieces gave me just the right tone for the stage I was creating,” said Norton.

 The appearance of the Minotaur, the beast that is human with the head of a bull, is symbolic of practices that were once perceived as shameful becoming normal. In short, the story of the Minotaur is one of deceit, shame and power and according to Norton the modern story of shame for the developed world is debt.

 “There is no shame or consciousness anywhere in sight, which is what we are teaching our children. We need to encourage personal financial prosperity and protect what we are going to leave for our children. Mining needs to be carefully examined for its longevity and sovereignty needs to be examined from more than a financial angle. ”

 Thoroughly aware of social issues and history in the making, Norton produces vibrant paintings, sometimes purely for fun and exuberance of life, at other times with a strong underlying comment.

 This exhibition forms a powerful body of work that will engage and engross all who see it. Norton cements her reputation as a top order narrative painter.

 The Hon Julie Bishop MP, Deputy Leader of the Federal Opposition, will officially open Prosperity on Wednesday the 14th of November.

 Norton is represented in significant corporate and government collections including Hamersley Iron, West Australian Parliament House, Qantas, BHP and private collections in the USA, UK, Asia and Germany.

Artists Floor Talk - The Artist Making Money and Prosperity Essay

Artists Ranting and Ravings on Debt Politicians and Journalists with Heads in Sand


Inspiring Quotes Used to Inform the Work

See Photos of the Opening Here