Memory, The Tool of Art

Double Dutch Jump Roping

Taking this one down. My painting, “Double-Dutch Jump Roping” has been on my wall for years. Always hanging in the background during colorful conversations of growing up in Roxbury. A moment in my childhood, not limited to a Black & White memory, because no photograph portrays this level of happiness and it isn’t always replicated in adulthood.

And yet, inequality and social injustices have often triggered the jumpy feeling in my legs, ever ready for the flight or fight response. A deep reminder that life isn’t always fair, but government should be.

I painted this piece because I wanted to show how games are the tools we use for training, that these are the tools we use to become our better selves.

Jumping Double-Dutch jump rope is an intense game that requires agility, focus, athleticism, hand-eye coordination and trust. It’s precision timing and teamwork, are necessary carry-overs into a successful life. As Rodney King lamented in 1992 after the Los Angeles riots.

“Can’t we all just get along?”

So I wanted to depict all of this, as a complete metaphor of life. It was important to me, that I show the kid’s agility, that the buildings are made of brick implies a sturdy background, a fire hydrant suggests peril, the car that moves them away from their childhood and the tree suggests life.

These are the things that embrace us. We must remember it closely, as we live beyond the memory, we don’t have to forget the moment. Yes, we can get along.

More of my art can be viewed at

Published by DaNice D Marshall

Pronounced Duh-NYSE. Published writer. Roxbury native, residing in Boston, Massachusetts.

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