Yinka Shonibare, Norton Christmas Project 2003

Yinka Shonibare, 2nd Floor, Norton Christmas Project 2002, image:greg.org
Yinka Shonibare, 2nd Floor, Norton Christmas Project 2002, image:greg.org
Dollhouse, Interior views, Yinka Shonibare
for the Norton Christmas Project 2002

In lieu of Christmas cards, the art collector Peter Norton and his family began sending out specially commissioned works. [Inspired by the Nortons’ example, we began commissioning artist editions–albeit at a much smaller scale–to send to family and friends as a commemmoration of various births and anniversaries.]
In 2002, the British/Nigerian artist Yinka Shonibare created a toy Victorian rowhouse, outfitted with his trademark Dutch batik fabrics, a photo of his own, and, for good measure, a Fragonard in the bedroom. Shonibare exhibited a sculptural installation based on Fragonard in 2001 and was in Documenta 11 last year.
Wink, Takashi Murakami, 2000, Norton Family Christmas Project, 2000, image:Toyboxdx.com

Wink, Takashi Murakami, 2000
for the Norton Family Christmas Project 2000, image: Toyboxdx.com

For the 2000 Project, Jap-pop artist Takashi Murakami made a Wink doll, which contains a happy little CD in its base. Read about it on Alan Yen’s ToyboxDX. And in 1996, Norton asked Brian Eno to publish an updated edition of Oblique Strategies, his highly sought after collection of question and idea cards, originally made in collaboration with the late Peter Schmidt. Gregory Taylor’s OS site includes Norton’s description of the Project and soliciting Eno’s participation.
My favorite Strategy (as I attempt to write and edit in public): “Give the game away.”