Maggie Ayres

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Newsletter - February 2009

Welcome to the February Newsletter! No, you didn't miss January's - I'm afraid this is the first one of 2009. However, that's not to say I've been sitting around doing nothing.

Already 2009 is filling up with artistic commitments and exciting possibilities so this month's newsletter will be taking a look at the year ahead, and the video is part one of two, dealing with one of the most important subjects for any textile artist - threads and fibres. Next month I will discuss how I use them in my work as a way of mark-making.

And, of course, at the end of the page is a high resolution image for you to download to print off or use as desktop wallpaper for your computer


As always, near the start of a new year, we look ahead, perhaps to plan or to imagine what can happen.

Forthcoming this year

And Then

From March 9th to 29th I will be taking part in “And Then”, a group exhibition by women of art and writing in the Studio of the Eastgate Theatre and Arts Centre, Peebles.

Tying in with International Women's Day, the idea behind the exhibition is to create a series of works, alternating between words and images, where each piece responds to the one before, creating a chain of interpretation and expression.

Victorian Corset Making

I was delighted to be offered a Creative Development Award by the Scottish Arts Council and Dumfries and Galloway Council, in order to participate in a Victorian Corset Making Course in York at the end of March.

I have long held an interest in the way society constrains and contorts not only our emotional responses, but our ideas of physical acceptance. Experiencing the intimate construction techniques of one of society's more notorious body shaping garments, will impact on my future work.


From 21st April until 2nd May there will be a solo exhibition of my work here at Castle Douglas Art Gallery entitled “Connection”.

I have a particular fondness for this venue; I love the space and natural light. And not only is it conveniently placed for my husband to nip across the road with fresh coffee, but it is also the place of my first solo exhibition 2 years ago. I'm really looking forward to it. Do come along if you can.

Spring Fling 2009

Spring Fling is the annual open studios event in Dumfries and Galloway at the end of May each year.

From 21st March to 18th April examples of my work will be included in the Taster Exhibition at Gracefield Arts Centre, Dumfries.

From 25th April to 16th May, the Taster Exhibition then moves to Stranraer Museum, in Stranraer

The event itself runs from 23rd to 25th May when visitors will be able to see artists and makers in their own studios (including mine!). Contact 01387 262084 or for a free brochure.

Farfield Mill

From 18th July to 23rd August there will be a solo exhibition of my work in the Dover Gallery, at Farfield Mill, Sedbergh, Cumbria. I'm excited about this exhibition as Farfield Mill is growing in reputation as a venue for showing textile art.


I will post more information about these events as time goes on.

Video of Using Threads and Fibres

This video is about the huge variety and choice of silk threads and fibres available for the textile artist. I find them irresistible and compulsive. The video is part one of two, where next month I will discuss how I use them in my work as a way of mark-making.



Download a free high-resolution image for your own wall or computer desktop

This is a detail from an artwork I am currently working on, which combines the unravellings from a piece of natural silk tussah with dyed silk tops and natural silk laps.


Right-click on the image and select Save Target As. You can then save the image on your computer and print it off on photographic or watercolour paper at up to A4 size without losing any quality, or use it as a desktop background for your computer.

Be advised the image is approximately 2MB big, so might take a little while to download

If you run into any difficulties then please let me know.


Questions and Comments:

I would very much like to hear from you. Please email me with any questions about my artwork, or with ideas of things you'd like to see and read in future editions of this newsletter.

And finally, if you know of anyone who you think might be interested in receiving this newsletter, please point them to to sign up.

Wishing you all the best until next time,



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