This painting was one of a number that were painted in 1989 soon after Morrisseau returned from his exhibit at the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris as part of the French Revolution Bicentennial celebrations. Morrisseau has titled it on the back in pencil.
Stained Glass Effect is a totem of empowerment.
Morrisseau is a member of the Bear Clan and a Grand Shaman of the Medicine Society which is traditionally guarded by four Medicine Bears. This painting depicts the Great Medicine Bear. In this painting Morrisseau depicts man as "God".
As a talisman this painting provides protection, good health, harmony and peace in accordance with the axiom, "as it is above, so it is below".
Morrisseau sets "white" into all "three" eyes to reveal that this bear is a "Spirit Bear", increasing its Shamanic significance. Spirit Bears are the legendary "albino" bear found only in British Columbia, where this painting was created. White, in any Morrisseau bear represents "good medicine" (i.e. White Magic).
This medicine is powerful because whenever a Spirit Bear appears the Anishnaabe are given a profound remembrance from their Creator. A reminder of their magnificent home from long ago that has been encoded into tribal memory. A place we named "Antarctica" and formerly called "Atlantis".
Spirit Bear, in three-fold stance, symbolically depicts the Anishnaabe constellation of Orion. To Morrisseau, as it is with the Aboriginals of the Southern Hemisphere, Orion a.k.a. "Bear" symbolizes the prehistoric source of all humanity. They believe that we are sourced to a planet that revolves around a star we called "Sirius". In this painting, the three brightest stars of Orion’s Belt are represented as the three white eyes of Bear.
This bear generates power.
The West side of this painting represents the past. The East represents the future.
The blue sky above represents the heavenly and the green below, the earthly.
The pink bar which crosses the breadth of the painting symbolizes society, humanity, conformity, horizontal life and the fragility of flesh (i.e. mortality).
The obelisk, rod of power or erect penis, is a primary aboriginal symbol depicting Shamanic power and the perpetuating life force. Its significant size and status in tandem with it facing North-East shows that Bear will ecstatically power up one’s future.
The bright orange pack on the back of Bear is his medicine pouch, traditionally placed on his back by South American Shamans and Morrisseau, in perfect accordance to the formation of the Orion Constellation’s secondary stars.
The deep red power point to the South-West of the artwork symbolizes the generation of earthly power from the deep past. The emanating lines from this "balanced" and therefore energizing power point show this earthly power circulating into Bear yet from humanity.
Bear’s legs and paws show us that he is driven through physical life to deliver "blueprint seeds" (or gifts) depicted as blue dots.
An Emanating line of power emerges from the hind leg of Bear. Five blue dots in this, the most "physical" of his appendages, show us that Bear lives life as a physical man. The emerging line of power shows that Bear contributes to the development of civilization.
Bear’s middle leg and paw display six "blueprint" dots which symbolize the realized ideal of a good life. Fruitful seeds of emotional life have been planted and grown. They have emerged through society and beyond into a higher place of peace and harmony.
Rising out of a deep purple which symbolizes ancient instincts Bear’s penis lifts emotional energy. Sexual power is impeccably balanced and expressed in the clear light of day as an act of God. Bear lifts and circulates energy.
Bear’s forepaw depicts Bear’s mind. It is a universal reflection of the five blueprint dots shown on Bear’s hind leg and paw. As it is above so it is below. It is the mind of a man.
The foreleg is painted differently than the other legs. It appears as a deep purple stroked with "Mayan" green, symbolizing knowledge of an ancient past.
The source or "soul vessel" who carries this ancient knowledge is grafted into the spirit of Bear depicted as the Shaman of the North-West. His ear adornments make it clear that he is the source of these "blueprints" which Bear brings to life. The Shaman’s turban shows us that he is the source of this knowledge which has "mushroomed" into being. It is Bear’s inheritance of inherent gifts from the past.
The Spiritual man, depicted as the North-East man, is the viewer experiencing this awesome power of God as a divine awakening.
Five green wheels of life and power circulate in perfect balance creating an energy path.
An emanating line of power emerges from the light purple of higher spiritual insight where its power modifies Bear’s instincts as it drives through Bear’s penis, transforming life into love, awakening mind and giving Bear the gift of voice.
Bear needs only use his tongue so that the upper and lower jaws are connected as one. Then the power once given will be returned. The circle fulfilled. The past with be joined to the future to create the eternal now.
The pink nose of this Sacred Bear symbolizes a complete Soul. This is a being blessed with the power of the tongue, peace of "high-bernation" and place of Kundalini release.