Norval (Copper Thunderbird) Morrisseau (Canadian, 1931-2007) Medicine Woman and Bear
Norval (Copper Thunderbird) Morrisseau (Canadian, 1931-2007)
Medicine Woman and Bear
Signed in Cree syllabics l.r., also signed and dated "Norval Morrisseau © 77" and
inscribed "The picture is of a genuine painting by my father Norval Morrisseau/ David Morrisseau..." on the reverse.
Acrylic on canvas, 29 1/2 x 34 1/2 in. (74.9 x 87.6 cm), unframed.
Provenance: Through the estate of the artist.
N.B. Northern Ontario-born Morrisseau pioneered a style known as Woodland or Legend painting. His work embodies a bold, colorful style that combines " shamanic experiences such as soul travel, depicting multiple levels of reality and visions of self-transformation." (1)
The self-taught artist was raised by his maternal grandparents who introduced him to the legends and myths of Ojibwa shamanism. He spent his youth in remote regions near Thunderbay exploring old canoe routes and petroglyphs. He was encouraged by a doctor to begin painting at the age of nineteen while recovering from tuberculosis at a hospital in Ft. William. While at the hospital, he met his Cree wife, Harriet Kakegamic, who taught him how to sign his name in Cree syllabics.
Morrisseau has had over forty one-man shows, and was the subject of a traveling retrospective at the National Gallery of Canada in 2006 and the George Gustav Heye Center, New York, in 2007.
(1) Vogel, Vanessa. "Norval Morrisseau." Grove Art Online. 15 Oct. 2008