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George's Fedora

From under the tutelage of a past

fading perhaps, but never lost

From out of a mirror we step

On wobbling feet, walk ahead

Seeing ourselves always in reflection

Never losing sight

This is a picture I've been working on for awhile, putting together different pieces until I finally found the ones that fit. My grandfather, George Stimson, wore this fedora probably in the 1950s. I don't recall ever seeing him wear a hat, except maybe to shield him from the sun when he was outside raking leaves, or maybe it was just such a part of his persona that I never noticed. Either way, it had to be in an earlier time when men (people) dressed to go out. I wanted to create a picture that spoke to the idea of emerging from under the hand (or hat) of my ancestors to take shape as an individual, someone of substance, but without losing that which came before and made me who I am. I picked up the elephants, which are solid turquoise, during my deployment in Afghanistan . . . a completely different world than anything my grandfather would have understood. And I emerged a different person.

George Stimson's Fedora, Huntsville, Alabama, July 2020

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