A Reflection on Legacy and Art: The Unveiling of Sojourner Truth Plaza

As an artist deeply rooted in the rich soil of Akron, the recent dedication of the Sojourner Truth Plaza and the statue at its heart marks a profound moment of pride, reflection, and gratitude for me. Standing in the very spot where Sojourner Truth once delivered her iconic 1851 speech, the unveiling was not just a celebration of a statue, but a reaffirmation of the values she embodied.

Creating this statue was a journey that went beyond the physical crafting of a figure. It was about bringing to life the spirit of a woman whose resilience and unwavering pursuit of justice continue to inspire generations. As I sculpted, I felt a deep connection to her story, molding each feature to capture both her strength and the softness of her humanity.

The statue stands tall, holding a book, a symbol of the knowledge and wisdom that Sojourner Truth spread in her lifetime. Positioned atop an impala lily, it connects her back to her African roots, grounding her legacy in a global context that underscores the universal struggle for equality.

The plaza itself, surrounded by stone pillars inscribed with words like “faith” and “activism,” is designed to be a space of inspiration and contemplation. It’s where history’s echo meets the voices of today, encouraging all who visit to carry forward the torch of activism and advocacy.

Commemorative Slates: A Piece of History to Take Home
In conjunction with the statue unveiling, I am also thrilled to introduce a series of commemorative slates. Each of the four designs captures an element of Sojourner Truth’s legacy, from her poignant words to the symbolism of the statue itself. With 100 of each design available, these slates offer a chance for individuals to own a piece of this historic celebration, to keep her story alive in homes, offices, and educational settings across our community and beyond.

The first design features the powerful quote, “I am not going to die, I’m going home like a shooting star,” set against the backdrop of the statue with stars shining brightly. Another highlights the phrase “Ain’t I a Woman,” a reminder of her speech that, though not verbatim, has come to symbolize her challenge to the norms of her time.

It fills me with immense gratitude to have been chosen to create this statue, and to see the community come together to honor such a significant figure. This project is more than just a statue—it is a beacon of hope and a testament to the power of art to bridge past and present, to inspire change and understanding.

Thank you to everyone who has supported this project, from the planners to the patrons, and to all who continue to spread Sojourner Truth’s legacy. Let us all strive to live by her example, advocating for justice and equality in all our actions.