Monday, December 13, 2010

In search of our mothers gardens

This particular piece of writing definitely made me think a little bit more deeply about what really defined art work.  Is art just music, painting and or drawing?  What comes to mind when you think about art?  Alice Walker gives you a different approach to looking at the everyday people in your life that create beautiful works of art often times, unknowingly.
             The poet Jean Toomer considers the black women of the post-reconstruction south who were so emotionally, mentally and even physically beaten down by life in general.  These woman who ended up being prostitutes as a result of having to suppress their work of arts that they so badly wanted to share with the world, but had no clue that they even embodied such great talent.  They could have been great poet, sculptures and musicians.  Sadly enough black women of the south were robbed of the ability to discover their raw talents.  It just makes you sad to think of the fact that we have been robbed as a people of knowing and seeing the work of such great artist (Walker pg. 2).
            Alice makes note of a slave named Phyllis Wheatley who was definitely a poet in her own right.  Some may have considered Phyllis ignorant in how she describes her owner as a “Goddess”.  When you think a little more deeply about Phyllis situation at that time you can really appreciate the art as she see’s it.  Phyllis Wheatley didn’t know any other way of life, so she quite naturally accepted things for what it was at that time.  What is even more impressive to me is here ability to write and express so eloquently what she saw as beauty.  I don’t know of many slaves or female slave for that matter who knew how to write in the 1700’s (Walker pg. 3).    
            Alice Walker also recognizes the art that her mom shared with her and others throughout her entire life.  Her mom would plant many types of flowers and arrange them in such a way that all you could do is stare in admiration of how well it all came together.  No one had ever let her mom know what she was creating was beautiful art.  Alice Walker came to realize that her mom embodied this great talent all along (Walker pg. 4).
            This essay came to make me realize how artistic my mom and other women in my family really are.  Thankfully my mom got to express her art form through Batik and Tie-dye.  One of her sisters eventually published a book after many years of writing.  Now I can truly say that I appreciate the work of art that they and so many others have shared with me.

1 comment:

  1. Great post and overview of Walker's story. And batik is a great example of a 'practical' form of art that's too often seen as a 'craft' Great job!