The Best Quotes from the 2019 Oscars Acceptance Speeches
Without a host, the 2019 Oscars were more reliant than ever on presenters and winners to deliver entertaining and memorable moments. Luckily, many of the night's stars came through, and the acceptance speeches — some of which accompanied historic wins — were particularly poignant. Click through to read the best quotes from the 2019 Oscars acceptance speeches. (Photos via Valerie Macon/AFP/Getty Images + Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Ruth E. Carter: After receiving nominations in 1993 and 1998 for Malcolm X and Amistad, Carter finally won the Oscar for Best Costume Design for Black Panther on Sunday night. She is the first Black woman in the Academy's history to win the category.
"This has been a long time coming," she said as she took the stage to accept her award. "Marvel may have created the first Black superhero, but through costume design, we turned him into an African king. It's been my life's honor to create costumes. Thank you to the Academy, and thank you for honoring African royalty and the empowered way women can look and lead on screen. … Our genius director, Ryan Coogler, you are a guiding force. Thank you for your trust and understanding my role in telling the African-American story. … This is for my 97-year-old mother watching in Massachusetts. Mom, thank you for teaching me about people and their stories. You are the original superhero." (Photo via Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Hannah Beachler: Black Panther racked up another historic victory with Beachler's Production Design award, which made her the first African-American to be nominated for and then win the category. "I stand here stronger than I was yesterday," Beachler said in her speech as she fought back tears. "I stand here with agency and self-worth because of Ryan Coogler, who not only made me a better designer, [but] a better storyteller, a better person. I stand here because of this man who offered me a different perspective of life, who offered me a safe space, who's patient and gave me air, humanity, and brotherhood. Thank you, Ryan, I love you."
She went on to share a message of hope for everyone watching: "I give this strength to all of those who come next, to keep going, to never give up. And when you think it's impossible, just remember to say this piece of advice I got from a very wise woman: I did my best, and my best is good enough." (Photo via Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Alfonso Cuarón: Accepting his award for his Best Foreign Language Film for Roma, Cuarón paid tribute to his Mexican heritage. "Cinema, at its best, builds bridges to other cultures," he said. "As we cross these bridges, this experience, and these new shapes and these new faces, we need to realize why they may be strange, [why] they are not unfamiliar. We need to understand how much we have in common," he continued. "This film would have not been possible without the specific colors that make me who I am. Gracias famila y gracias Mexico." (Photo via Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Phil Lord, Christopher Miller, Peter Ramsey, Bob Persichetti, and Rodney Rothman: Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse won the Oscar for Best Animated Feature, but the award was just a bonus for the filmmakers, who said they felt the real victory was the reaction to the representative superhero movie. "When we hear that somebody's kid was watching the movie and turned to them and said, 'He looks like me,' or 'They speak Spanish like us,' we feel we've already won,” writer and co-producer Phil Lord said.
"To our audience, thank you so much," Ramsay continued. "We love you and we just want you all to know: We see you. You're powerful. This world needs you, okay? This world needs you. So, please, we're all counting on you. Thank you." (Photo via Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Domee Shi: Bao director Shi, the first woman to helm a Pixar short, had a message for other young women who aspire to become animators. "To all the nerdy girls out there who hide behind your sketchbooks, don't be afraid to tell your stories to the world," she said as she accepted the Best Animated Short award alongside producer Becky Neiman-Cobb. "You're gonna freak people out, but you'll probably connect with them, too, and that's an amazing feeling to have." (Photo via Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Rayka Zehtabchi and Melissa Berton: Zehtabchi and Berton won the Best Documentary Short Oscar for their film Period. End of Sentence., about the period shame faced by women in India, and they could not have been more excited. "I'm not crying because I'm on my period or anything!" director Zehtabchi said excitedly. "I can't believe a film about menstruation just won an Oscar!"
Berton, who produced the film, went on to speak about the inspiration for the documentary. "This film began because high school students here and our brave partners at Action India wanted to make a difference, a human rights difference," she explaind. "I share this with teachers and with students around the world. A period should end a sentence. Not a girl's education." (Photo via Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Spike Lee: Lee finally won his first-ever Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay for BlacKkKlansman, and the revered director gave a spirited speech, which started with him telling the producers not to start the 90-second clock on him. "The word today is 'irony.' The date, the 24th. The month, February, which also happens to be the shortest month of the year, which also happens to be Black History Month. The year, 2019. The year, 1619. History. Her story. 1619. 2019. 400 years," he began.
"Four hundred years. Our ancestors were stolen from Mother Africa and brought to Jamestown, Virginia, enslaved. Our ancestors worked the land from can't see in the morning to can't see at night," he continued, before going on to pay tribute to his own grandmother, who "saved 50 years of social security checks" to put him through college.
"Before the world tonight, I give praise to our ancestors who have built this country into what it is today along with the genocide of its native people," he said. "We all connect with our ancestors. We will have love and wisdom regained, we will regain our humanity. It will be a powerful moment. The 2020 presidential election is around the corner. Let's all mobilize, let's all be on the right side of history, let's choose love over hate, let's do the right thing!" (Photo via Valerie Macon/AFP/Getty Images)
Lady Gaga: "This is hard work. I've worked hard for a long time. It's not about winning. It's about not giving up. If you have a dream, fight for it," an emotional Gaga said as she accepted her Oscar for Best Original Song for "Shallow," from A Star Is Born. "It's not about how many times you get rejected or you fall down or you're beaten up. It's about how many times you stand up and are brave and you keep on going." (Photo via Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Rami Malek: Malek's role as Queen singer Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody made him the first Arab-American to win the Oscar for Best Actor. "To anyone struggling with their [identity] and trying to find their voice, we made a film about a gay man, an immigrant, who lived his life just unapologetically himself," he said. "The fact that I'm celebrating this story with you tonight is proof that we're longing for stories like this. I am the son of immigrants from Egypt, a first-generation American. And part of my story is being written right now. And I could not be more grateful to each and every one of you, and everyone who believed in me for this moment. It’s something I will treasure for the rest of my life." (Photo via Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Alfonso Cuarón (Again): The Roma director stepped to the podium several times at the 2019 Oscars, and when he accepted his award for Best Director, he turned the spotlight on the domestic workers and Indigenous women that his film celebrates. "I want to thank the Academy for recognizing a film that was centered around an Indigenous woman," he began. "One of the 70 million domestic workers around the world without worker rights, a character that has historically been relegated to the background of cinema. As artists, our job is to look where others don't. This responsibility becomes much more important when we're being encouraged to look away." (Photo via Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Artist Dev Heyrana On How Bravery, Resilience and Sunshine Influence Her Work
Ever meet someone who you feel immediate kinship with on a deep almost spiritual level? That is legit every person's experience upon meeting Dev Heyrana, the star of this edition of Creative Crushin'. A fine artist, hip hop dance teacher and constant collaborator, Dev's particular brand of creativity is one-of-a-kind. She manages to be warm, welcoming and woke, with a focus on inclusivity, social justice and motherhood that comes through in every piece of art she creates.
Anjelika Temple here, co-founder of Brit + Co and one of many humans who has benefitted from Dev's boundless generosity and kindness. We first connected at a launch event, then I asked her if she and her family would like to model for a B+C shoot (they did!), then months later, I asked the IG universe if anyone would be down to co-parent with me for a day so I could speak at a conference. Dev said yes! And for those that know her, none of these serendipitous moments are surprising.
Now it's time to delve more into Dev's story, her creative inspiration, her thoughtful approach to parenting and what makes her more passionate than ever about bringing her point of view and artistic voice into the universe.
Anjelika Temple: First, foundations. Where did you grow up? What is your heritage? What did you study in school? Where do you live now?
Dev Heyrana: Born in The Philippines and immigrated to the U.S. when I was 9 years old. Me and my family are from the island of Cebu and I'm a proud Cebuana. My childhood in the Philippines felt like freedom. I had my swimsuit in my backpack for whenever we decided to swim and I biked everywhere.
Immigrating here at 9 yrs old was a transition, to say the least. My parents had big dreams but the move was heavy on them. It wasn't easy. I had to grow up fast. I took care of my sisters while my parents worked night shifts. By the age of 12 I would cook dinner and get my sisters ready for bed. Something I didn't realize was that kids my age didn't do those things until I got older. We would play these make-believe games to make, in hindsight, our hard situation brighter.
I think this is really when art played a big role in my life. It was something I could escape in and always felt healing.
I witnessed racism towards my family and didn't know how to make sense of it. These events left a mark. I was a quiet kid and observed everything and everyone around me. I think about my grandparents, Lolo Jose and Lola Rita, a lot as I walk through life. When I make decisions. As hard as it feels, you have two choices, do you let it take you down or take it one step at a time forward. I kept going and it really shaped me as to why I am the way I am today.
I studied Fine Arts at The Corcoran in DC. I owe that decision to my art teacher, Mr Giles, in High School. He was retiring and wore a Hawaiian shirt every day during my senior year. He was a curmudgeon and I felt incredibly special since out of everyone in the school he really believed in me. As grumpy as he seemed to the class, he would tell me things like "Go into the other studio and break some glass, then put it on a canvas." He's the reason why my abstract pieces have elements like clay and sand in them.
I've had incredible mentors and all were teachers. Mr. Giles in High School and Christine George in College. Christine was the one who told me to go either to New York or San Francisco because "D.C. is no place for an artist like you." She told me to not listen to anyone, how I can still paint, be a graphic designer, and, if I choose to, have a family. I've never had anyone tell me anything like that before.
I took a chance because of her. Moved and went to Design School in 2006 and I've stayed in the Bay Area ever since, raising two girls with the love of my life.
Anj: You are one of those magical human beings that has figured out how to be a full-time artist. What was your career path like before you were able to dive fully into your creative passions?
Dev: The most radical thing I could have done in my family, I did, I went to college for Fine Arts. A mix of being so young and having to do it on my own, I went with the school that gave me more scholarships. Even then I worked three jobs to be able to get through it. Hard work is ingrained in me.
With my sculpture background, I fell in love with Print and Packaging and why I came out here to San Francisco. I appreciated the security of having a career in Graphic Design. I also learned how to work with clients and the business side of things. Even then, I never stopped painting.
A few years ago I went through a pretty hard time with my health. I dealt with six surgeries in one year and I still have to do some follow-up ones. That experience almost broke me and what got me through was my family and painting in bed while I recovered.
When I finally got back on my feet, my heart just wasn't in Graphic Design anymore. So I made a two year plan. With a toddler and a mortgage, I wanted to make sure my steps were thought out. I put myself out there as an Artist while I still worked in Design. After a year I worked part time as a Graphic Designer and stepped down from my Creative Director position. I loved it, to be creative as an Artist and as a Designer. I looked at 2018 as my year to make the jump. If my work as an Artist balances out with my salary then I would quit in the Summer of 2019. And so here we are. I also am sharing a studio with my good friend, Naomi PQ, and I feel like my creative drive is just beginning.
Anj: What do you love about painting? How do you feel when you're in a creative flow state?
Dev: Like every part of me is free. Free to express myself through the stroke of my hand. How all of it leads back to my heart. These elements I use to paint have a mind of their own and how I need to respect the process.
It centers me and reminds me that the process is just like the life we lead. I know I still have so much more to learn but while I'm painting no matter how it's going, I'll embrace this moment.
Anj: You reference your roots quite a bit in your work. Talk to me more about how your roots inspire your work.
Dev: One of my earliest memories is of my Lolo Jose teaching me how to water mango saplings. He converted to Buddhism when my mother was young, so he viewed the world with love and kindness. I didn't realize it then but watering those mango trees were life lessons. We need to take the time to nurture, practice patience, and respect all living things. I still imagine him walking beside me often, carrying his teachings as I find my way in this world.
Nature and the Sun drive my pieces. My abstract works are fragments of moments. Like the sunset I grew up with when I was seven years old in the Philippines, like how I saw the water in Cebu when I dove in as a young adult, and like when I saw the redwoods with my children for the first time.
I see earth in our skin and especially when I paint people. How our mango trees grew and blossomed because the dark earth was rich with nutrients. I imagine the Sun piercing through these women I depict. I paint their love and bravery because their resilience cannot be contained. I want to celebrate all of it.
This is the beauty of Art, I am able to paint exactly how I see it.
Anj: Motherhood and your daughters are also central themes in your work. How has motherhood changed your approach to creating artwork?
Dev: Everything. I was still deep in my Design Career and I would paint at home. One day Quinn, who was 3 years old at the time introduced me at the park to a mom. "This is my mom, she's an Artist." It struck me that my toddler knew who I was more than I knew myself. That's really when I really owned it. I am more fearless because of my girls.
I own my body, I thank people when they compliment me, and I am selective but fearless when I use my voice. I am more in tune how I speak about myself because of them. When I paint these women I want to celebrate them. I notice how I embrace myself is translated in my paintings.
Anj: What advice can you give to parents who are trying to tap into their kiddos' innate creativity?
Dev: I don't have a lot of guidelines set up. I'll say "Let's draw the biggest fish we can draw" or "how many silly lines can we make" and I let them lead me. They ask me questions, show me things, and I sit there with my coffee watching their eyes wide with excitement. Watching them in their creative process is pure joy for me. Those silly lines can turn into a dragon or waves and next thing we know, we're drawing a big beach scene. My advice would be that you can suggest something to start it off but be open to how they take it. It is such a beautiful window into their minds.
Anj: Shifting gears to HIP HOP DANCE! Talk to us about his component of your creative expression.
Dev: I loved the Hip Hop scene in DC and discovered how much fun the clubs were in college. My friends told me about this Hip Hop Crew I should try out for, I was so scared because I've never taken a dance class in my life. I got in and it was like having another family. We competed all over the East Coast, it was a blast!
I found hipline when I started my first Design Job and needed an outlet. It was exactly what I needed and one of the owners asked if I was interested to teach. I've been teaching there since 2009 and am still going strong. It's a wonderful community of women. Now we're virtual and reaching clients all over.
Anj: What does a typical [pandemic] day look like for you? How does it differ from your rhythm before COVID?
Dev: I've been practicing being kinder to myself lately. Both me and my husband work full time and so having the girls at home is a challenge. Some days we are amazed by how smooth it went and then there are others where if the girls are clean and bellies are full, it's a total win.
Now that we're on month 8 our rhythm before covid felt more chaotic to be honest. I felt like we were always rushing out the door while carrying so many bags. Now my husband and I try to have coffee together, if he has a break from his meeting, and we sit with Quinn before school to see what she has to do for the day. Rowan's preschool closed down but we were able to find a wonderful speech therapist for her and she has an Adventure Pod we go to two times a week.
The one thing we really try to do is go outside once a day. Have some magic in their childhood no matter how small. It could be just going up for a hike by our home and picking up leaves, riding our bikes, or watching the sunset from our window. Seeing how the girls' react to these adventures we have is pure magic.
Anj: When you get creatively blocked or burnt out, how do you reset? Do you have tips you can share?
Dev: I go outside. I go out for a hike or go to the beach. Even if it's 15 minutes, something about grounding yourself in Nature is really healing. I also do exercise where I doodle for two minutes because it feels doable. Judgment-free doodles, always opens the doorway to more.
Anj: I know firsthand that community-building is huge for you. Tell us more about what your support system and creative community looks like.
Dev: I feel a lot of love and strength when I think of my community. My relationship with my sister led the way what women supporting women looks like. It's listening, asking questions, remembering, cheering for all the wins, being there even if it's hard, and taking time to invest in them. The way me and my sister show up for each other is why I have these amazing women in my life. I can talk to them about my family, motherhood, and we're all trying to balance it all while sharing my most recent project. I feel really blessed especially looking back in my college years where I don't know where Art would take me.
Anj: When you need to give yourself a pep talk, what does it sound like?
Dev: I usually take a deep breath then say or think "One step forward". Most of the time, I'm scared (as shit) but the thought of not trying scares me more. That one step forward can be hard as hell and maybe even heartbreaking, but I have to try.