Frances K. Smith Lecture on Artist Norval Morrisseau with Dr Carmen Robertson


Entanglements and Teachings in the Art of Norval Morrisseau

Dr Carmen Robertson

To study the art of Norval Morrisseau is to become entangled in several complicatedly intertwisted narrative threads. Dr Robertson leads the Morrisseau Project: 1955–1985 research team working to build a database of his art and archival sources, design an online digital storylines project, and publish a book on his art and life from this period. Following the interconnected lines of inquiry his artworks posit, Robertson interrogates some of the complex teachings that Anishinaabe artist Norval Morrisseau’s visual storytelling language quietly offers twenty-first century audiences.

Dr Carmen Robertson holds the Tier 1 Canada Research Chair in North American Indigenous Visual and Material Culture at Carleton University. The Scots-Lakhota researcher has been researching the art of Norval Morrisseau since the early 2000s and has written two books, numerous chapters, and scholarly essays on the topic of his art and life. Robertson co-curated the exhibition Medicine Currents and the Art of Norval Morrisseau with Anishinaabe curator Danielle Printup for the Carleton University Art Gallery for Fall 2023. Other research interests include theorizing Indigenous aesthetics and studying Indigenous prairie beadwork. Robertson co-edited a collection of essays and art titled Bead Love: Knowledge Transmission and Other Indigenous Aesthetic Considerations from the Flatlands, forthcoming in Spring 2024 with University of Manitoba Press.

Supported by the Frances K Smith Fund.
Image Credits

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