Mixed Media Artist

J J Worden

I Need to Make Things Even if Nobody Cares

November 13, 2018

Conversations : A Series

  • November 13, 2018

I alluded to this in my previous 2 posts but I've been having weird and wonderful conversations with photos of people long since passed. When I flipped through these albums I found during our move, I noted how so many, particularly Tom's Aunt Mildred's, were of only females. This was during or just pre-WWII so I guess the guys were gone? Or maybe Millie (fwiw WE rarely called her anything but Mildred. I have a feeling there was much about "Millie" we knew nothing about ... the photos were like a glimpse into HER world) just liked taking photos of all her girlfriends. (again. an aside...Tom's father's photos tell a very different story so I'm going with the 2nd possibility)

The Interrupted Fairy Tale : 15"x11" . plaster and wax on plywood

These past few months watching what's been happening south of the border, both politically AND in the entertainment industry, well let's just say a whole whack of (ie 50%!!) of the population have been triggered. It's hard. I know from personal experience ... ya think you've seen the last of those feelings and WHAM! they hit you upside the head yet again. It's enough to make you want to dig a hole and hunker down until the world comes back to its senses.

A Conversation with Ethel: 6"x6 3/4" . plaster and wax on plywood

As I rummaged through the albums,  I pondered if it's ever been different.  All these old (almost 85 years!) photos of young women, hanging together, supporting each other, having adventures, travelling the country, footloose and fancy free ... with hopes and (big?) dreams that seem possible when a world has gone mad taking the boys and men away to fight, calling on those left at home to step up. Opening up a whole host of possibilities that were never even thought of, let alone acted on.

Heading West: a conversation with Millie : 7"x5" . plaster and wax on plywood, wood shadowbox

Flipping forward 10 - 20 years in those same albums and the guys show up again. And that spirit of ... I dunno... hopefulness? freedom? hunger? desire? ... seems lacking. The girls have moved into the boys arms, babies in prams, coupled up. Certainly less goofiness. Less spark.  I wonder how they related to each other after the men returned. Were they less forthright? More subdued? I wondered if they mourned the loss of the lightness that shone from those photos. Maybe it would've happened anyway. Maybe age has a way of rounding off those corners. But I couldn't help feeling a certain melancholy. So much potential. So many abandoned dreams. And can only hope that our children's children can witness our hopes realized as they [click, scroll, project?] through the photos of our youth.

Waiting for Yes : plaster and wax on plywood, vintage cigar shadowbox

Ask Me No Questions: 7"x14" . plaster and wax on plywood

Aw HELL No! : 8"x13" . diptych . plaster and wax on plywood

It Was All Over in a New York Minute : 8 1/4"x21" . plaster and wax on plywood

You Do You, Booboo : 15"x36 1/2" . plaster and wax on plywood


Current Work

Artist Statement

Artist Statement

I'mJen Worden

Maker of Things

The little details, the subtle nuance.
How we feel, what we see and smell and hear.
The distant call of a crow.
The feel of the Spring sun on our face as we emerge from the dark, cold winter.
These are the experiences and layers that interest me.

Because everything is connected to everything.

Our stories may be different but why we tell them is the same.
To feel connected and loved.
To be heard.

Through layers of wax and plaster, paint and photographs.
With rusty nails and found objects and wire.
These are my stories.

Contact Info

354 Sarty Road RR2 . Wentzell Lake
Nova Scotia . Canada