By Kathrina Tiangco
Posted October 19th 2018
OPRAH’S ‘TO THE HIGHEST BIDDER’ PAINTING BY HARRY HERMAN ROSELAND
Oprah Winfrey may be one of the world’s richest women but she always remained vocal about her roots. She countlessly shared her story of how she grew up poor and faced many obstacles along the way to success. Her experience remains as one of the most powerful inspirational stories many people can look up to. She always encourages other people to dream big and never give up.
The media mogul shares some of the things that help remind her of where she came from. Oprah owns a particular painting named “To the Highest Bidder.” She’s had it for three decades.
This painting is particularly special to her because it symbolizes her life’s journey. The painting was created by Harry Rosaline and stands over six feet tall. The artwork features a slave woman holding her daughter’s hand while she is on an auction block.
Oprah says that she always has to pass the painting whenever she steps in and out of her house. Therefore, it serves as a daily reminder of where she came from. Meanwhile, she also keeps framed lists of African American slaves in plantations inside her library. She also passes this list every single day.
Most of the time, she stops and mentions their names aloud along with their ages. Also listed beside their age is the amount they are worth if they were put up for sale. Sometimes she pauses to say a prayer. She usually does this every time she needs to make a major decision, particularly in her companies.
Speaking their names reminds her how far she still needs to go and that she is never alone. It serves as a reminder of what she has to go through. Some days she wonders if she is still the only black woman sitting at the table. She thinks about the artificial boundaries and how without it, black women will have representation in every room.
Oprah admits that there are moments when she calls on her ancestors to give her strength. She remembers how the late poet Maya Angelou used to tell her to put her crown on har head and wear it because it’s already paid for. Angelou also told her that whenever she walks into a museum, she should always remember how her ancestors have already laid the crown for her.