nmorrisseau.4337.308.sSeveral years in the making, this exhibition, which has been curated for the MacKenzie Art Gallery by Michelle LaVallee, explores the history behind an early association of First Nations artists that laid the groundwork for the entry of aboriginal artists into the contemporary Canadian art world.

Formed in Winnipeg in 1974, the PINAI included artists Jackson Beardy, Norval Morrisseau (pictured), Daphne Odjig, Eddie Cobiness, Alex Janvier, Joseph Sanchez and Carl Ray.

If you click this link you’ll find a bit of background on the group and LaVallee’s curatorial thesis which seeks to position the group in the broader context of aboriginal politics of the day and reaffirm the avant garde nature of the work they were producing at the time.

There’s an opening reception for at the MacKenzie Gallery Friday Sept. 20 at 7:30 p.m. That will be followed on Saturday by a conversation between LaVallee and Alex Janvier and Joseph Sanchez at the gallery at 2 p.m.  The exhibition will run until Jan. 12.