ARTWORK > We Are Pilgrims

Moku hanga woodblock print, artist's rendering of Priscilla and John Alden by Annie Bissett
JOHN ALDEN & PRISCILLA MULLINS, 1621
Japanese Woodblock Print
8" x 6" (20.3 x 15.2 cm) each

William Bradford described 22-year-old John Alden as "a hopfull yong man, [who] was much desired." I guess he was a hunk. Alden also did some hunting and trapping in Maine, so I pictured him wearing an LL Bean style plaid hunting jacket. Most of the people in that time period had lice and fleas, thus John Alden was a hunk but there were lice in his hair.

John's wife, Priscilla Mullins, was 16 when the Mayflower arrived. She was the only member of her family who survived the first winter, so I chose to depict her in her private grief. I applied 21st century notions of anglo female beauty to the picture and used "memento mori" imagery from colonial American sources to decorate the corners of the piece.

6" x 4.75" (15.2 x 12 cm) image size
made with 4 shina plywood blocks
4 hand-rubbed colr layers each on Nishinouchi paper.
Edition: 15