description: Raised on a Derbysire hill farm, Jo Naden (b.1951) moved to the West Midlands in the early 1970s and has stayed in the area ever since. After graduating with a degree in fine art from Birmingham Polytechnic in 1979, she has worked prolifically as an artist of small-scale gallery works, and has also produced a number of larger public sculptures for prominent locations around the West Midlands. She has played an active role in various artistic societies and organisations: from 1982 to 1985 she was Head of Fine Art at the Midlands Art Centre, Birmingham, and is currently a member of the Royal Birmingham Society of Artists.
Her work is inspired by an early exposure to the flora and fauna that surrounded her as she grew up, and, in a more subtle manner, by the ‘time measured wind and wuthering, halls and hauntings, quarter days and harvest, nights of deep snow and Queens of the May’ of the countryside. These interests are clearly visible in her medal for BAMS, Time Spent, of which she writes: ‘The inspiration for the medal is the Dandelion. An inhabitant of our waysides and fields, wasteland and curb, a tenacious presence, the dandelion measures the passing day… The obverse side of the medal is patterned to show the dandelion seed head when the seeds have blown away, in essence time is spent. The pattern is that of the life or growth spiral.
‘I find a system based on tidal phenomena, created through the moon’s regular orbit around the earth, and the rotation of the earth around the sun, brought together, a most poetic evocation of time keeping for the Islands of Britain. The reverse side of the medal has a concave hemisphere, just off-centre; the applied golden patination is suggestive of the sun. The passage of time is observed as the sun’s shadow progresses within the bowl.’