(Their quandary remained unresolved and I had to wait for my mom, covered in my own tears and Benjamin's half-digested Nesquik and Frosted Flakes.) In retrospect I wish I'd talked to my parents about these moments, but I was just too young to process it.
I would later learn that racism, at any age, whether subtle or extreme, is always too difficult to process. I had my creek adventures, my half-Nigerian best friend Jason and, of course, I had Lego. All I needed was my bin of bricks, one of my mama's Kente cloths (a simple Ghanaian fabric I would employ for Lego loss prevention) and my endless supply of imagination.
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.
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.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.In Scarborough, for the first time, most of my peers looked like me. In this exciting new environment, and with the sudden onset of puberty, I hastily traded in my healthy Lego obsession for more hormonally gratifying pursuits.I didn't find myself casually building again until I was in my early twenties.I found myself jobless with an incomplete Fine Arts degree. I started noticing that Lego artists like Nathan Sawaya had thriving careers.While job hunting, I found myself digging back into the bin. Around this time my consciousness around identity began to develop as well.Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments.Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.Now it lives on as a workshop for a new generation of builders.(Michelle Clarke Photography) I get to meet young people who perhaps don't have access to Lego, and who haven't been introduced to identity-based artwork that pushes their imaginative capacities. I'm also working on a new body of work that draws on West-African metaphors and mysticism as embodied by melanin-rich, inter-dimensional children.