Like that time a wayward classmate unceremoniously puked on my six-year-old afro during story time, and I was whisked away to the bathroom sink.
There I stood as two women anxiously discussed how one goes about washing the impenetrable hair of a black child.
Does it present a vision for the future of our country?
Read more about how to pitch your essay to Canada 2017. Ekow Nimako is a sculptor and author who uses Lego and a surrealist approach to explore, expand and preserve the black and West African mythos.
By the time I began Grade 1, my parents had divorced.
Our family bounced between Quebec, Ontario and London, England before settling down in London, Ont.If there's one thing I've learned in life it's this: if you want to create something truly original, there's no room for following anyone else's instructions.My name is Ekow Nimako and I play with Lego for a living.To my surprise, it did — but I can't say the road to my dreams was paved with yellow bricks.One need only examine my work to see the building blocks of my art and identity: my black Ghanaian-Canadian roots; my childhood in small town Ontario; my politics. My older brother, Joseph, and I were born at the Jewish General Hospital in Côte-des-Neiges, Montreal to two Ghanaian parents.My imagination helped me glaze over a lot of things.Like the fact that kids who looked like me were largely absent from my favourite cartoon worlds, and that my beloved yellow minifigs, those cheerful plastic figurines that populated my Lego creations, were really white.But it wasn't until 2012 that I really had the time to get back into my childhood hobby.You see, the successful start-up where I'd worked as a copywriter suddenly became a successful slow-down. From birds I moved on to cats, and from cats I moved on to facsimiles of human beings.I engaged with radical, queer, black feminists and discovered artists like Kara Walker and writers like Octavia Butler and Nnedi Okorafor. It wasn't long before I had my own exhibition: one that challenged me to really examine my identity as a black man, a Ghanaian man, a Canadian man and a visual artist.All this from reconnecting with my childhood obsession. One that Ekow Nimako says was 'pivotal' to his Lego sculpting career.