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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  1. the problem with you is you do not post the truth. what is your next trick you greedy bastard. randy potter

  2. Most certainly greed sparked the problem. Remember it was Norval himself who first identified fakes and named them “abominations”. And now a few fanatics are bent on destroying reputations online.


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