James Northfield: 23 cool facts

By Gwylym Owen

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James Northfield (1887 – 1973) was an Australian graphic artiste active from the 1910s through to the 1960s. He illustrated many advertisement and presidency advertisements which depict Australian scenery, wildlife and daily sparkle and also stir uphill opinion the priorities of the dealing out of the day.

Northfield is best known as the designer of a series of posters for the Australian National Travel Association, who commissioned him, alongside Percy Trompf, Walter Jardine, Eileen Mayo, Gert Sellheim and C. Dudley Wood to push Australian holiday destinations to local and overseas travellers. Many of these ‘Travel Poster’ designs were included in the 1999-2000 exhibition Follow the Sun – Australian travel posters 1930s–1950s at the National Library of Australia, and in various further public exhibitions.

Northfield plus created a series of patriotic posters during World War II.

A detailed monograph of Northfield’s work, James Northfield and the Art of Selling Australia, has been completed by author Michelle Hetherington of the National Museum of Australia.

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