Loch Arthur 1, Dumfries, Scotland

Loch Arthur is a rural Community which includes men and women with disabilities. There are 9 houses in which altogether 70 people live and share their lives. Life is full and busy for all of us.  Just two years ago we opened a big farm-shop and café and this is a lot to take on. At the same time it feels so wonderful to be really part of our local community and we feel much anchored in the beautiful landscape that surrounds us and are connected to many people living in the area. 

An art school painting teacher once said, "there are no straight lines in nature."  He didn't live in Dumfries and Galloway on the Solway coast where the tide leaves behind lines and stripes of sand and water as it ebbs.  We are also surrounded by more lines and stripes in our agricultural environment:  furrows and fences; dry-stone walls and fields of mown grass; lines cut through forests and across fields of grain; and lines of fishing nets stretched across the Firth - different seasons, different colours, different textures. Since arriving at Loch Arthur from Madrid three years ago,  Maria Ruiz Plana has recorded the shapes and colours of the changing seasons in and around the community.  In preparation for the World Wide Weave Maria made watercolours based on the photographs she has taken.  Out of these photographs and watercolours we have created six panels:  two large pieces layered with four smaller. The two large panels are inspired by the water and reeds of Loch Arthur from which the community takes its name.  They were woven by Ian who usually weaves rugs in a similar format.  The smaller panels reflect the seasonal changes of colour in Southwest Scotland.  They were woven by the four regular weavers:  Pamela, Louise, Ian and Jonathan and also by as many as wanted to from the whole Loch Arthur community:  families, friends, farmers, cheese makers, shopkeepers, volunteers, visitors, co-workers and gardeners.  The farm sheep contributed some wool which Ian had spun and which we dyed with some local plants.  We also wove with other dworkshop.  We wove with otherech were donated by neighbours and local shepherds and weavers.s.  farmers, cheesemakers,  shopke materials which were donated by neighbours and local shepherds and weavers. The fastenings were made from natural twigs fashioned by the woodwork shop.