Norman Catherine was born in 1949 in the small coastal town of East London in South Africa. Other than 2 years of formal art training at high school he is for the most part self-taught. He currently lives at the Hartbeespoort Dam that is situated about 1 hours drive North-West of Johannesburg. His prodigious output has been engaging art enthusiasts since 1969 when he held his first solo exhibition in Johannesburg. His work is included in most South African Art Museum and Corporate collections as well as in MOMA and the Brooklyn Museum in NYC, USA.
Catherine’s art imbibes a dystopian vision of the socio-political landscape that informs his psyche. History, horror, crime, conflict, psychoses, politics & pathologies serve as stimuli for his creative output that vacillates between the macabre and the comic, between a gasp and a giggle. He conveys his cynical vision through a juxtaposition of dark and light sensibilities veering between an internal hallucinatory realm and literal commentary on the material world. There are no easy classifications for the genre of his work suffice to say that he rebels against any dogma or rigid definition.