Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Norvel Morriseau

When I think of Norvel Morriseau's art work and many First Nation's people, I am reminded of semiotics, a word I just learned about in my Art Seminar class! Don't ya just love school?!

These symbols are so ancient and innate in our human nature that we are compelled to express ourselves starting in childhood. Shapes that are found in preschematic drawing in particular, I think of the circle, the common symbol that is the first one usually drawn by children at this stage. Circles are powerful symbols, they have long represented to me infinity, eternity the cyclical nature of life and eternity. I think they are so close to our nature, a powerful language that we relate to on an intuitive and subconscious level. I have learned about spiritual geometry and explored some of it through my art work and find this too comes from a similar kind of consciousness.

Native spirituality is beautiful and makes so much sense to me and only wish the Christian community could be as compassionate, as many First Nations do not reject Christian spirituality and have embraced many of the traditions found within the church.
Many years ago when I was very involved in my vocation as a Youth Care Worker, I had the opportunity to travel to the West Coast to Victoria B.C. where I attended a National Youth Care Conference. I came across a very obscure kiosk, awkwardly set off to the side. The booth displayed literature and video about a program that engaged youth with what was called, Rediscovery. Bill Reid the Haida elder and internationally acclaimed artist was supportive of this program. In all my 17 years of experience working with troubled youth, this kind of program and philosophy was the only kind that made sense to me, ever still, true for me to this day.

"Rediscovery's goal is to promote cross-cultural understanding and global peace by adopting traditional Indigenous People's values of respect for oneself, other people and the natural environment."


Betsy Grant said...

Great values to be sure.

Unknown said...

Thanks Betsy for reading.

Anonymous said...


2) That painting isn't a Norval Morrisseau