WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — The Typewriter Eraser, Scale X
Considered one of the founders of Pop Art, Claes Oldenburg’s (American, born Sweden, 1929) provocative work transforms common objects into colossal sculptures that upend the conventional relationship between viewer and subject. Typewriter Eraser, Scale X, 1999, made in partnership with his wife, Coosje van Bruggen (American, born Netherlands, 1942-2009), is a gift from Trustee Ronnie Heyman and a signature work that stands at the Norton’s new entrance. To celebrate this significant donation, in 2019 the Norton presented an exhibition, Oldenburg and Van Bruggen: The Typewriter Eraser, curated by Assistant Curator J. Rachel Gustafson. In March 2021, the Museum released a catalog Oldenburg and Van Bruggen: The Typewriter Eraser, A Favored Form, authored by Gustafson, and features reflections by Heyman as well as Lord Norman Foster, chairman and founder of Foster + Partners, who were integral to the sculpture’s installation at the Norton.
About the Norton
The Norton Museum of Art is an art museum located in West Palm Beach, Florida. Its collection includes over 7,000 works, with a concentration in European, American, and Chinese art as well as in contemporary art and photography. In 2003, it overtook the John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art, in Sarasota, and became the largest museum in Florida.
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday
10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
10 a.m. - 7 p.m.
11 a.m. - 5 p.m.
General - $18
Seniors (60+) - $15
Students with valid school ID - $5
Children 12 and under are free
Between Memorial Day and Labor Day, admission on Saturdays is free for residents of Palm Beach County (with proof of residency).
Click here to view Norton's current exhibitions.
1450 S Dixie Hwy, West Palm Beach, FL 33401
This History of the Norton
The Norton Museum of Art was founded in 1941 by Ralph Hubbard Norton (1875-1953) and his wife Elizabeth Calhoun Norton (1881-1947). Norton was an industrialist who headed the Acme Steel Company in Chicago. He and his wife began collecting to decorate their home, but then he became interested in art for its own sake and formed a sizable collection of paintings and sculptures. In 1935, Mr. Norton semi-retired, and the couple began to spend more time in the Palm Beaches. They contemplated what to do with their art collection and eventually decided to found their own museum in West Palm Beach, to give South Florida its first such institution. In 1940, construction began on the Norton Gallery and School of Art located between South Olive Avenue and South Dixie Highway in West Palm Beach. Mr. Norton commissioned Marion Sims Wyeth of the distinguished firm of Wyeth, King & Johnson to design the Museum. The Art Deco building opened to the public on February 8, 1941. Norton continued to add to his collection until his death in 1953, and the works that he and his wife gave the Museum form the core of the institution’s collection today.
The Museum’s permanent collection now consists of more than 8,200 works in five curatorial departments: European, American, Chinese, Contemporary and Photography. Since 1954, many distinguished additions have been made thanks to the endowment Mr. Norton created for the purchase of works of art. They include masterpieces such as Stuart Davis's New York Mural (acquired in 1964), and Jackson Pollock's Night Mist (acquired in 1971).
In 2011, the Norton launched Recognition of Art by Women (RAW), an annual exhibition series that celebrates the contributions of living female painters and sculptors with solo exhibitions. Funded through the Leonard and Sophie Davis Fund/MLDauray Arts Initiative, the Norton has organized solo exhibitions for British painter Jenny Saville (2011), American painter Sylvia Plimack Mangold (2012), British sculptor Phyllida Barlow (2013), Swedish sculptor Krista Kristalova (2014), African-born, L.A.-based painter Njideka Akunyili Crosby (2016), and Austrian painter Svenja Deininger (2017). RAW 2018 will feature the work of Chicago-born, New York-based artist Nina Chanel Abney.
In 2012, the Norton instituted the Rudin Prize for Emerging Photographers, a biennial international award those on the leading edge of the field who have not yet received a solo museum exhibition. Winners have included: Argentine-born, Los Angeles-based artist Analia Sabin (2012); Israeli artist Rami Maymon (2014), and New York-based artist Elizabeth Bick (2016). Prominent art collector and longtime Norton supporter Beth Rudin DeWoody created the Prize to honor her father, the late New York City real estate developer Lewis Rudin.
In 2013, with Florida’s population dramatically increasing and with Norton Trustees seeing the need for more exhibition and education space, the Board decided to embark on a bold, visionary Museum expansion, enlisting the renowned London-based architectural firm of Foster + Partners to design a new building. The transformed Museum opened on Feb. 9, 2019, featuring the Kenneth C. Griffin Building, which includes 12,000 square feet of new gallery space; expanded classroom space; a larger student exhibition space; a state-of-the art, 210-seat auditorium; a new store and restaurant; and a Great Hall serving as the Museum’s “living room.” The expansion also includes a lawn for outdoor programming, or relaxing, and a sculpture garden. The project also included the renovation of six Museum-owned, 1920s-era cottages to house an artist-in-residence program, and the Museum Director’s home. All to better serve the art and the community.