As I grow older I seem to reflect more on life, its meaning, and what contributions I have made over the years; especially during National Holidays. As a child I remember the 4th of July having a very different feel to it—one of excitement and expectation. Now, as an adult, it has become more of a reflection mixed with pride and remembrance for those who gifted this great country to future generations, and for those who honor and protect it to this day.
I remember someone once telling me that to be successful in life; one should have a child, plant a tree, and write a book. Although, I have children and planted a tree, I have been unable to write a book. I’m hoping that saying is only a metaphor for success, since writing a book is my aspiration and intention, but more closely resembles a fantasy. Maybe art could be substituted for writing?
As I pondered my question I surfed the net looking for how art has influenced our culture. Serendipitously I came across a contemporary artist/teacher by the name of Jack E. Dawson. One of his paintings, “If My People”, represented not only our American culture, but more deeply, the commonality that ties all humanity together; sacrifice, tragedy, despair, hope, God, and freedom. If you could summarize the spirit of the intentions of our founding fathers in a picture, they would nearly all be captured in this work of art. Thank you, Jack E. Dawson, for your gift to our country.
There are several hidden messages in the painting. One of the most intriguing questions is; who is mending the flag? Click HERE for answers.