I am Ritchie Sinclair, and I feel humbled to say that I have been involved in the art world for most of my life. My passion for art began at a very young age, and since then, I have had the opportunity to develop my skills as an artist and an expert in Norval Morrisseau’s artwork.
Sinclair and Morrisseau in 1997
Norval Morrisseau was not only my mentor and teacher, but he was also my close friend and confidant. We worked together at the Thunderbird School that we founded in 1979, and he wrote and signed an artist’s statement in 1994 to acknowledge my authority to teach. I was even ordained in a public Beardance ceremony by Morrisseau in 1997, which was a moment of great respect and honour for me.
Throughout my career, I have had the privilege of attending exhibitions and related ceremonies with Morrisseau, including the “Shaman Artist” exhibition opening at the National Gallery in Ottawa in 2006. I have also developed and operate several important Norval Morrisseau websites, such as Morrisseau.com, NorvalMorrisseauLegal.com, and the premier Morrisseau Facebook and YouTube profiles.
Ritchie Sinclair on CTV National | 2014
One of my proudest achievements was publicly identifying 1018 fake Morrisseau paintings in 2008, before anyone else publicly called any Morrisseau a fake. I have represented myself in multiple lawsuits defending Morrisseau’s art, and I was able to win the first victory that identified an alleged Morrisseau painting as a fake. I have also verified and authenticated Morrisseau art for some of Canada’s leading galleries
As a public speaker and teacher, I have had the privilege of teaching thousands of students about Morrisseau and Woodland School art. I have also had the opportunity to develop relationships with many owners of galleries that were involved with Morrisseau, including Jack Pollock, Albert Volpe, Ilona Nagy, Don Robinson, Joe McLeod, Bryant Ross, and many others.
Despite my extensive experience and accomplishments, I remain independent and in good standing with major players in the Morrisseau art world, including the Morrisseau Estate. I am honored that other experts turn to me for guidance, and I strive to maintain the gold standard when it comes to Morrisseau art authenticity.
Above all, I am dedicated to preserving Morrisseau’s legacy and standing up for his art, even when it is tough to do so. Morrisseau was not only an incredible artist, but he was also a friend, mentor, and inspiration to me, and I will always be grateful for the time that we spent together.