Motivation from the past Maze 31

"Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave, I am the dream and the hope of the slave. I rise I rise I rise." Maya Angelou

I think too many times we look outside of ourselves, our families, our traditions to find inspiration, motivation, or help when what we really need to do is look back to those who came before us!

I chose this quote because I saw the commercial last night when I was thinking about quotes.  I remember my first taste of finding out who my ancestors were.  It was a class assignment in 5th grade.  Everyone in class came with names, (one girl was related to Mark Twain) others had family crests and pictures.

I knew about slavery at the time but didn’t realize that for the most part meant that it’s almost be impossible to determine exactly who my ancestors are.  I was embarrassed at the fact that I had to tell my class my ancestors were slaves.

Present day I’ve since gotten over the shame and have nothing but pride.  As the quote says “I rise”, when looking at the history, less the individual stories of my ancestors, I find so much inspiration.  Anyone who could overcome the drowning tides of slavery and survive the ocean of hate is reason to celebrate!

When I look at the reason I started this project, the many failures I’ve had, or the tough times, I need only look back to those who came before me to find inspiration.  To realize that I come from a long line of survivors and I to can overcome life’s struggles.

I did this maze last summer but wanted to share because people who have seen it (I believe are just being nice, the face didn’t work like I wanted) love it and ask many questions about it.  And as an artist this piece is the closest I’ve come to selling anything.


~ by mazemangriot on July 21, 2011.

6 Responses to “Motivation from the past Maze 31”

  1. The face looks a bit alien, the Spock ear and all. But it is also very powerful.

    I think that you are way ahead of 3/4 of the population in that you have something you have come to terms with and have embraced. It is not an excuse for who you cannot be. That is huge. So many people reach a point where they cannot move beyond their legacy, ancestory or their immediate past. They do not use it as a point of refernce but instead are forever thethered to it walking in circles stuck to something that has nothing to do with who they are or what they can accomplish.YOU are active in your pursuit of something more than that.

    • Thanks for the feedback. I didn’t even think of it as an ear I guess it could work. But thats the horn of Africa but yea the face didn’t work the way I imagined. I’m thinking about trying this one again.

  2. I like the artwork and the quote. My family fled an eastern block country to come to Australia so I can understand for them what struggle is. Great to hear the story behind the piece!


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