A TRIBUTE TO BLACK MOTHERS
Blog #5 December 11, 2020
BY JOHN GASCOT
With Mother’s Burden, painted in 2016 and inspired by the Mothers of the Movement (#blacklivesmatter) I wanted to create a piece that honored mothers of color (specifically Black mothers) at this time in history. Much is said about a woman’s work never being done, and mothers in particular. Not enough is acknowledged about the burden of Black mothers in the turbulent sociopolitical climate we live in.
Religious imagery served as inspiration, once again. Black Mary gazes upon a black figure, too grown to protect within the safety of her arms. He is both Christ (all seeing) and Black Man (all eyes on him). She wears the crown of thorns, symbolizing burden and inflicted pain. She lactates freely, symbolizing an uncontrollable instinct to nurture. The dove in her hand is a symbol of the peace she must find within to stand strong and unwavering in the face of circumstances beyond her control.
Mother’s Burden, acrylic on canvas, 24×30″