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An Evening with Writer/Editor/Illustrator, Jessica Joy Hiemstra



Muskoka Authors Association welcomes you to our first hybrid meeting, in person and via Zoom, on Thursday, June 9. Our guest speaker will be Jessica Joy Hiemstra, a visual artist and award-winning set-designer. She works in a variety of mediums on many kinds of surfaces – from watercolour and thread on paper to acrylic on acetate to plastic sewn into canvas. Jessica’s also a writer, editor, and illustrator. From poetry to children’s books to murals to large-scale installations, Jessica thinks of making art as an act of listening – to space, to other people, to her materials. They say an adventure is a story you don’t know the ending of – and it’s with this approach Jessica squares off with whatever she’s making. In the words of Azar Nafisi, Jessica believes “Art is as useful as bread”.

One of the things people often ask her is “what’s the difference between all the things you do?” Jessica doesn’t distinguish much between her mediums. Instead, she chooses the best medium for exploring whichever question, concern or exaltation is most pressing to her in the moment – from delight in the body to sorrow and anger at how poorly we care for our world and each other. Sometimes she uses words, sometimes pencil, sometimes paint. Jessica likes what Paul Klee once said about art – that one eye sees, the other feels.

“Jessica Hiemstra knows how hard and dark the world can be and she is willing to take you there.  One minute your warm heart glows with tenderness, the next, not so tender at all…  Jessica Hiemstra … strums that nerve as though she were Johnny Cash, diet-pill rapid and ripped,  beating the bejesus out of his wooden box of a guitar.  Hiemstra has fine tuned that minor chord we bellow when we are all singing that song  “loss.”” – Michael Dennis, Today’s Book of Poetry.

Jessica writes and edits poems, essays and stories. She’s widely published in literary journals and has won several awards for her writing, and every time she finds the right words she’s surprised and happy.

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To learn more about Jessica Joy Hiemstra, please visit

In Person Meeting Location: Bracebridge Centre for Active Living, 54 Dominion Street, Bracebridge. Please use Dominion Street Entrance.

Alternative Zoom Room opens at 6:50 pm; meeting starts at 7:00 pm.

Fee: MAA Members: Free, Non-Members: $20

For more information and to register, visit Muskoka and click on UPCOMING EVENTS or  call David Bruce Patterson at 705-801-8074.

After you register for this event, you will be sent a link to the ZOOM event via email.


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