Friday, May 16, 2014

No Elder Abuse, No Neglect for Morrisseau

A rock star of the art world, Norval Morrisseau enjoyed regularly attending his exhibition openings. KRG made every effort to ensure Norval Morrisseau's comfort and safety at all times, from hiring private security in order to discourage visits from obsessive fans to renting medical equipment, wheelchairs and adjustable beds, to aid with his hotel stays.

Mr. Robinson and KRG specifically caution against drawing any undue inference of truth from the woefully ignorant and intentionally deceptive comments posted on YouTube.

Norval Morrisseau was always present at his shows of his own volition. Make no mistake, Norval Morrisseau experienced fame and enjoyed his celebrity status. Photo: Norval Morrisseau on 7 May 1994 photographed at the opening of his third solo exhibition "Honouring First Nations" at Kinsman Robinson Galleries. Courtesy Kinsman Robinson Galleries, Toronto.
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Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Norval Morrisseau Declarations Are No Hoax

Originally published on 2/1/13. The artist Norval Morrisseau made clear his disapproval at the behaviour of numerous art galleries and auction houses regarding fakes, forgeries, breaches of copyright and moral rights in numerous letters, e-mails and affidavits—some dating back to 1993—sent out years before he succumbed to the ravages of Parkinson's disease. Some were as simple as a handwritten note on hotel stationary stating, "I Norval Morrisseau did not paint the picture shown in the photograph" (signed and dated 2004—pictured above). Many of the recipients simply ignored Norval Morrisseau's requests.

Here’s a follow-up post that you'll want to read: Morrisseau Defends Against Fraud |
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Friday, December 20, 2013

Art Theft Notice - Important Morrisseau Paintings Stolen

Norval Morrisseau
Inspiration Of Shaman Painter… His Family, 1996
Acrylic on canvas, 96x36 ins., 243.84x91.44 cms.
(first image and right-facing figures)
Unsigned and framed (diptych)
Norval Morrisseau
Shaman With Two Children, 1996
Acrylic on canvas, 96x36 ins., 243.84x91.44 cms.
(left-facing figure, two children)
Signed and framed (diptych)

»On December 18, 2013 at approximately 7:35 p.m., the above-described paintings by renowned Anishinabe artist Norval Morrisseau were reportedly stolen from a private residence in Tiny Township. OPP received a call from an alarm-monitoring station and responded to the scene within minutes of the break and enter according to the owner. Today, the paintings are valued in excess of $200,000. They were purchased by the present owner at Kinsman Robinson Galleries. Norval Morrisseau is an iconic Canadian artist whose symbols and enduring artwork have become synonymous with Canada's national identity. A number of Norval Morrisseau artworks in public collections are certified as being of "outstanding significance" to Canada's national heritage. If you have any information concerning the whereabouts of these paintings, please call police at 705-526-3761 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477, or send a tip online. Crime ref. : OPP13395779. This notice was circulated by the Executive Director to the member galleries of the Art Dealers Association of Canada on January 30, 2014.
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Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Norval Morrisseau Gallery Collection

Norval Morrisseau Gallery Collection
October 19 – November 9, 2013

Image detail: Norval Morrisseau, Shamanic Vision, 1996, Acrylic on canvas, 48x36 ins. Art copyright © 2013 Norval Morrisseau Estate.
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Thursday, July 4, 2013

Norval Morrisseau’s Visual Narratives

In conjunction with Thunder Bay Art Gallery exhibition
Morrisseau: Works on Paper
June 14 – Sept 8, 2013

Join Dr. Carmen Robertson

Thursday July 4 @ 7:30 pm

Thunder Bay Art Gallery

Lecture open to the public, donations welcomed.

Telling Stories on Canvas: Norval Morrisseau’s Visual Narratives

From the website: »
Aboriginal artist Norval Morrisseau whose entrance onto the Canadian art scene in 1962 introduced a unique artistic language steeped in Anishinaabe cultural traditions. Melding oral narratives, personal storytelling, and a visual language that draws on Indigenous visual elements, Morrisseau’s art serves as a hybrid form of visual narratives that draw on a range of influences in order to shape stories on canvas that reach back to the past, take from the present, and exert a transformative influence on the future.  This lecture discusses works by Morrisseau that confirm the importance of narrative in his art and acknowledge the multi-layered stories embedded in his artwork.

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Sunday, June 23, 2013

Norval Morrisseau Remembered Fondly

Kinsman Robinson Galleries fondly remembers our eighteen-year association with Norval Morrisseau, also called Copper Thunderbird.  Norval Morrisseau was one of the most influential indigenous artists of the 20th century.

Like Canadian art pioneers, Tom Thomson and Emily Carr, Morrisseau inspired successive generations of visual artists to pursue their own visions.

Morrisseau was a Grand Shaman, a passionate storyteller and the inspiration behind one of North America's most colourful, instantly recognizable and notably original art movements, the Woodland or Anishinaabe School of Art. Photo: Morrisseau pictured in 2004. Copyright by Roberts Studios, 2004.
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Thursday, May 16, 2013

KRG Accepts Matulić's Offer To Settle

Kinsman Robinson Galleries has accepted Internet blogger Ugo Matulić's offer to settle our defamation lawsuit against him. Based upon an agreed statement by the parties involved, the settlement of this case was approved on 16 May 2013.

Our decision to agree to this settlement was made in order to end the ongoing distraction and cost of a complex litigation process.

KRG has operated as a fine art gallery for thirty-three years. As longtime members of the Art Dealers Association of Canada, our practices are fully consistent with both the law and accepted standards in the art world. KRG will continue to pursue our moral commitment to protect the artistic legacy of Norval Morrisseau and to preserve the value of genuine works by the artist.
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Thursday, May 9, 2013

Norval Morrisseau: A Voice Not Forgotten

In keeping with the concept of droit moral (in this case the artist's right to not claim authorship of a work), Norval Morrisseau publicly disavowed the black drybrush paintings over a six-year period beginning in 2001–through the formation of the NMHS in 2005–until a month before he passed away in 2007. With no inducement, Norval Morrisseau returned his first statutory declaration to KRG in 2001 wherein he stated unequivocally that he did not paint the subject paintings.

The Visual Artists Rights Act amended U.S. law granting the moral rights of attribution and integrity to American visual artists in 1990. A recent Ontario court ruling demonstrates that Canadian artists cannot rely on moral rights protection equal to their American or European counterparts for that matter. In this case, authorship of a work is being attributed to Norval Morrisseau against his will. Clearly, Norval Morrisseau took the necessary steps–during his lifetime–to ensure that such artwork was not attributed to him in perpetuity.
Photo: Norval Morrisseau with longtime art dealer Donald Robinson pictured in 2004. Copyright by Roberts Studios, 2004.
Here’s a follow-up post that you'll want to read: Morrisseau Defends Against Fraud
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Sunday, April 21, 2013

Morrisseau Voice 'Thundered Like Sentinel'

“I go to the inner planes. I go to the source. I even dare to say, I go to the house of invention where all the inventors of mankind have been.” –Norval Morrisseau

Cited by Donald C. Robinson in his introduction to Norval Morrisseau Exhibition: ‘Honouring First Nations’ (Kinsman Robinson Galleries, Toronto, 1994). "My first visit to Norval Morrisseau's studio had a profound effect on me. That day, Norval told me that he had been thinking about me for some time, but we had never previously met." In a fitting tribute to Norval Morrisseau, Robert Houle, a close friend and contemporary Anishnabe Saulteaux artist, wrote, "As a master narrator, [Norval] had a voice that thundered like the sentinel of a people still listening to the stories told since creation."
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Friday, January 18, 2013

Morrisseau is Canada's Picasso

Few artists of the 20th-century played a greater role in defining and then reinventing their art form than Morrisseau or Picasso. Many of their individual influences have been adopted by other artists in recent history.

Both artists exhibited in the South of France during 1969. Herbert T. Schwarz, MD, collector and author, organized Morrisseau's first solo exhibition there at Galerie Saint-Paul. Schwarz also knew Picasso well. Schwarz visited Picasso while promoting Morrisseau and tending to exhibition details.

Four decades later, there remains a strong market for top quality artworks by Norval Morrisseau's hand but collectors are passing up anything that appears second-tier.

Illustrated: Norval Morrisseau accompanied by Donald Robinsonhis art dealer for eighteen yearson a visit to the McMichael in 1997. Photographed in front of Norval Morrisseau's painting, Shaman and Disciples (1979). Reproduced in b&w on the dust jacket, Norval Morrisseau: Return To The House of Invention (Key Porter Books, 2005).
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Friday, December 21, 2012

Happy Holidays - Morrisseau's Animal Unity

As 2012 comes to a close, we would like to take this time to thank our wonderful customers for making this year a success. From our family to yours, we wish you a delightful holiday season and a happy New Year. (Please note KRG will be closed from Dec. 23 until Jan. 7, 2013; reopening on Tues., Jan.  8, 2013).

We leave you with an important painting that portrays one of Norval Morrisseau's universal themes which he revisited in different variations over the course of his artistic career — In Spirit We Are One.

Illustrated: Animal Unity (1978) Acrylic on canvas, 50x108 in, 127x274.32 cm. Provenance: By descent - Collection of Mr. & Mrs. John Payne; The Pollock Gallery, Toronto; Acquired directly from the artist. Reproduced: p. 158, Sinclair/Pollock, The Art of Norval Morrisseau. Toronto: Methuen Publications, 1979. Exhibited: Norval Morrisseau 2012 Retrospective. Sep 15 - Nov 20, 2012, Kinsman Robinson Galleries, Toronto.
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Sunday, November 11, 2012

Norval Morrisseau Early Birch Bark, 1968

Norval Morrisseau
Untitled (Fish), 1968
Ink on birch bark
3.75x7.25in, 9.525x18.415cm
Provenance: Private collection, New Hampshire, U.S.; Acquired from the artist at Beardmore in 1968. Reproduced: p. 34,  Kinsman Robinson Galleries, Norval Morrisseau 2012 Retrospective. Toronto, 2012. Exhibited: Norval Morrisseau 2012 Retrospective. Sep 15 - Nov 20, 2012, Kinsman Robinson Galleries, Toronto.

"To the Indian a fish represents the human soul, one turns into a fish as the asteral (sic) body journeys into the land of his supernatural totemic existence; if it appears that he has pleased his ancestoral (sic) abode his place there will be forever..." - Norval Morrisseau
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Saturday, October 20, 2012

Norval Morrisseau - Extended until Nov. 20

There's been an overwhelming response to our current Norval Morrisseau retrospective, so much so that we have decided to extend the exhibition another month. On view until Nov. 20: An unprecedented number of original works from the '70s illustrated in the Sinclair/Pollock book, The Art of Norval Morrisseau (Methuen, 1979). A rare, incised birch bark scroll is of particular importance. Circa 1958-61, Thunderbird With Ancestral Motifs was part of the Imperial Oil Collection. The scroll was originally acquired from Jack Pollock in 1980. Norval Morrisseau is pictured above, at age 35, painting outdoors — which he enjoyed thoroughly — at Red Lake during August, 1966.
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Saturday, October 13, 2012

Morrisseau Art Stands Test of Time, 1975

"A vibrant interplay of birds, fishes and snakes."

On August 25, 1975, Time Magazine published an arts review on the iconic Canadian painter, Norval Morrisseau. Time reported, "The result is an art of fierce clarity and sophistication ... Morrisseau has moved to more flowing and self-confident works." Three original paintings illustrated the article: The Artist With His Four Wives (1975), Self-Portrait Devoured by His Own Passions (1974) and Nature's Balance (1975, pictured above). Remarking on the original painting titled Nature's Balance, arts reporter, Jon Anderson, wrote, "A vibrant interplay of birds, fishes and snakes." He continued, "The content of Morrisseau's current works is often more personally revealing than he cares to discuss." Powerful words from the past still ring true today.

Illustrated: Nature's Balance, 1975, Acrylic on kraft paper, 73x48 in, 185.4x121.9 cm, Provenance: Collection of Faith Sinclair, Toronto; Acquired directly from the artist.  Reproduced: p. 114, Sinclair/Pollock, The Art of Norval Morrisseau. Toronto: Methuen Publications, 1979; p. 55, Carpenter, Carole, artmagazine (Nov/Dec 1979); Time magazine (Aug 25, 1975). Exhibited: Norval Morrisseau 2012 Retrospective. Sep 15 - Oct 20, 2012, Kinsman Robinson Galleries, Toronto.
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Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Norval Morrisseau: The Early Years, 1960

»Pictured is the streetside view (2008) of the house on McKenzie Island where Norval Morrisseau lived for some time, and where he first met Selwyn Dewdney (the self-taught archaeologist, ethnologist and author) and Bob Sheppard (the OPP constable stationed on McKenzie Island from 1956-60 who introduced the two) during the Spring of 1960. The house has been occupied by a couple for the past 19 years. Essentially, it hasn't undergone any major renovation since Morrisseau lived there.
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Saturday, October 6, 2012

Norval Morrisseau: The Early Years, 1967

»In 1967, Canadians joined together to celebrate Canada's 100th birthday. The Centennial Committee commissioned Norval Morrisseau to paint a monumental mural for the Indians of Canada pavilion during Expo 67 held in Montréal. Pavilion commissioner, Andrew Tanahokate Delisle, Chief of Caughnawaga (Kahnawake) First Nations, was responsible to provide visitors "with an honest, sincere depiction of Aboriginal life in Canada". Prior to completion, Norval Morrisseau walked off the job (which he left in Carl Ray's hands) over objections raised by government organizers to Morrisseau's portrayal of the bare-breasted Earth Mother. Remaining true to his vision, Morrisseau's dedication read, "In honor to my Grandfather Potan Onanakonagas and to our Ancestors - Copper Thunderbird".
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Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Norval Morrisseau: The Early Years, 1965

»Iconic Canadian painter, Norval Morrisseau, proudly displays one of his transformational paintings inside his home at Red Lake in 1965. This painting shows a shaman figure in full regalia, with medicine bags worn around the neck—a symbol connected to personal protection and power—in partial transformation as the mythical thunderbird.
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Saturday, September 29, 2012

Morrisseau's Shaman Transforming With Bears

Norval Morrisseau
Shaman Transforming With Bears, 1986 [SOLD]
Acrylic on canvas
47.5x29.5 in, 120.65x74.93 cm
Provenance: Private Collection, Maple Ridge, BC; Acquired from the artist
Reproduced: p. 16,  Kinsman Robinson Galleries, Norval Morrisseau 2010 Retrospective. Toronto, 2010.
Exhibited: Norval Morrisseau 2012 Retrospective. Sep 15 - Oct 20, 2012, Kinsman Robinson Galleries, Toronto.

»This original Morrisseau depicts of the story of how the spirits of their ancestors inhabit the bear. The split background is a reference to Morrisseau's belief in the religious movement known as Eckankar—three distinct colours denote separate planes of existence. Light blue offered protection to the soul. Bear always held a special significance for the artist. Not only was Morrisseau a member of the Bear Clan, but sacred bear communicated with Morrisseau during his Vision Quest. Morrisseau never lost sight of the underlying strength of this important subject matter over his artistic career.
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Friday, September 21, 2012

2012 Retrospective @ Kinsman Robinson Galleries

Norval Morrisseau 2012 Retrospective @ Kinsman Robinson Galleries
September 15 - October 20, 2012
Honouring 50 years of Morrisseau history
40-page colour catalogue available

Norval Morrisseau's major dealer and principal gallery is showcasing a 50-year retrospective of Morrisseau's artwork from Sep 15 until Oct 20, 2012. "Norval Morrisseau 2012 Retrospective" features photographs of the revered artist and 46 original works of art in order to celebrate the fifty-year anniversary since Morrisseau burst onto the Canadian art scene.

Norval Morrisseau came to prominence following his first sold-out exhibition at Toronto's Pollock Gallery in 1962. Time Magazine (Sep 28, 1962) reported, “Few exhibits in Canadian history have touched off a greater immediate stir than Morrisseau's.” It's a statement that was true half a century ago and still holds true today. Five decades later, Morrisseau's artwork is notable for its kaleidoscopic colour, bold black outlines and sacred imagery. Morrisseau's signature style has cemented the artist as an icon of Canadian art.

Founded in 1980, Kinsman Robinson Galleries (KRG) specializes in Norval Morrisseau art of exceptional calibre and significance. The gallery co-authored two hardcover books along with Norval Morrisseau. KRG has held three catalogued exhibitions since Norval Morrisseau passed away. 2012 Retrospective is one of the biggest Morrisseau exhibitions of recent years featuring both paintings and drawings by the iconic Canadian painter Norval Morrisseau.
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Friday, September 14, 2012

Honouring 50 years of Morrisseau history

Celebrate 50 years of Morrisseau history with the gallery that represented Norval Morrisseau and supported the artist during his lifetime. On view are several never-before-exhibited artworks from prominent Morrisseau collectors, including Lister Sinclair (who co-wrote the book, The Art of Norval Morrisseau), Edna Fulford (who ran the Beardmore lumber yard and hardware store), Walter Ard (who taught at the Red Lake School) and Robert Houle (who attended the Beardmore tea party). September 14, 2012 marks the 50-year anniversary of Jack Pollock's first sold-out exhibit which catapulted Morrisseau to international acclaim. Within the first three days, 28 paintings by Norval Morrisseau had been sold. Around the same time, self-taught archaeologist, ethnologist and author, Selwyn Dewdney wrote, "Norval's paintings have a passion, spontaneity and unpretentious simplicity that expose the emptiness of much contemporary painting." KRG's catalogued exhibition runs from Sep 15 to Oct 20, 2012.

Illustrated: Norval And Third Eye, 1976, Acrylic on canvas, 30x24 in, 76.2x60.96 cm. Provenance: Collection of Robert Houle, Toronto; Wells Gallery, Ottawa; The Pollock Gallery, Toronto; Acquired directly from the artist. Reproduced: p. 7, Kinsman Robinson Galleries, Norval Morrisseau 2012 Retrospective. Toronto, 2012. Exhibited: Norval Morrisseau 2012 Retrospective. Sep 15 - Nov 20, 2012, Kinsman Robinson Galleries, Toronto.
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Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Morrisseau - Bold And Beautiful

Norval Morrisseau
Week-Kuno, Shaman In The Astral Plane, 1993
Acrylic on canvas
59x48in, 149.86x121.92cm
Provenance: Private collection, Ottawa; Kinsman Robinson Galleries, Toronto; Collection of Gabe Vadas; Acquired from the artist
Reproduced: p. 4, Kinsman Robinson Galleries, Norval Morrisseau 2012 Retrospective. Toronto, 2012.
Exhibited: Norval Morrisseau 2012 Retrospective. Sep 15 - Nov 20, 2012, Kinsman Robinson Galleries, Toronto.
the Child of God Send
into the Worald [sic]
to heaven experience.
in his Nightly Vishion [sic]
he knows he is not bound to
flesh - and it able's [sic] at free
will to come and go
in the Blue Worald [sic]
of Animals and pets
»Handwritten by Norval Morrisseau (verso, in graphite) in 1993.
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Saturday, September 8, 2012

Norval Morrisseau Online Catalogue

Here's a digital copy (PDF) of KRG's upcoming exhibition, Norval Morrisseau 2012 Retrospective — the fourth such exhibition of the late Norval Morrisseau in the past five years. Opening in a week's time on September 15, it marks 50 years since Jack Pollock's first sold-out Morrisseau show in Toronto during September, 1962. Toronto-based contemporary Anishnabe Saulteaux artist, Robert Houle, has contributed his newly written first-hand account chronicling Norval Morrisseau's legendary tea party from 1978, illustrated with never-before-seen photos, which makes exceedingly interesting reading.
Morrisseau 2012 Catalogue
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Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Morrisseau's painting Raven And The Sun

Norval Morrisseau
Raven And The Sun, c. 1966 [SOLD]
Acrylic on artist board
24x45.25 in, 60.96x114.935 cm
Provenance: By descent - Collection of Lorna McConnell, Ontario;
Acquired from the artist
Reproduced: pp. 16-17,  Kinsman Robinson Galleries, Norval Morrisseau 2012 Retrospective. Toronto, 2012.
Exhibited: Norval Morrisseau 2012 Retrospective. Sep 15 - Nov 20, 2012, Kinsman Robinson Galleries, Toronto.
One day in anchient [sic] times
there was no sun in the sky.
As the huge raven was flying
low by the ocean he seen [sic]
a very shinning pepple [sic] or stone.
Being very mischief and
curious took the stone into
its mouth and swallowed
it the the [sic] Raven flyed [sic]
into the sky feeling very funny
becane [sic] to vomit out comes
the stone bursting into flames
And light upon the earth
for the stone (being really
the sun) took orbit.
Today much respect is held
to Ravens by the Ojibwa
Indian for his curiousty [sic]
bought [sic] light upon the earth.
»Handwritten by Norval Morrisseau (in graphite, on 3-hole punched narrow-ruled paper) around the time of Jack Pollock's art class at the Beardmore Elementary School in Aug 1962.
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Thursday, August 23, 2012

Norval Morrisseau's iconic Canadian art

Norval Morrisseau
Untitled (Sacred Bear), c. 1969
Acrylic on kraft board
30x32 in, 76.2x81.28 cm
»Affectionately referred to as "dancing bear" by gallery staff, Norval Morrisseau executed this particular painting with a high degree of craftsmanship and skill during the late 1960s. The subject matter, skill level and style as well as the earth tones (that were part of Morrisseau's ever-popular colour palette) are telltale signs that you're looking at the real deal.
Provenance: Private collection, Montreal; The Shayne Gallery, Montreal; Artist’s agent working for Indian and Northern Affairs, Kenora; Acquired from the artist
Reproduced: p. 35,  Kinsman Robinson Galleries, Norval Morrisseau 2012 Retrospective. Toronto, 2012.
Exhibited: Norval Morrisseau 2012 Retrospective. Sep 15 - Nov 20, 2012, Kinsman Robinson Galleries, Toronto.
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