The blog of photographer Kim Ayres

The Hut

With the Wigtown Book Festival beginning next Friday, preparations have been occupying most of my waking thoughts this past week.

As Artist in Residence (see earlier post), I’ve been given a studio space to be open to the public at least a couple of hours each day and to create the artwork in. The space I’ve been provided is in “The Hut”, which is behind ReadingLasses café and bookshop.

Despite my initial thoughts that it might be something akin to a garden shed, “The Hut” is actually a large wooden building divided into several sections and is mostly used for storing large numbers of books that haven’t yet made it out onto the shelves of ReadingLasses.

In the centre of “The Hut” is a room… of sorts.

It has wooden joists rising up to create a frame about 3 feet in from the walls, which has been covered with a muslin kind of material. It’s all rather odd and unlike anything I’ve seen before. It's not unlike being in a tent inside a building.

Novelty is one thing, but the muslin walls are a major problem.

My concept is to take lots of photos over the 10 days of the Festival, of residents, authors and visitors staring into the lens of my camera. And each day I plan on printing out the photos and pinning them to the walls. The idea is that the people in Wigtown during the event become artwork. And as the walls will fill up with all these faces and it will become something of an immersive environment.

But trying to pin photos to muslin walls would be a bit too tricky.

However Anne Barclay, the Festival Manager, is a fast thinking problem solver, and they are going to fix white boards to the joists, giving me a more stable wall to pin the photos to. They will also clear the space around the windows so I should have a bit of natural light.

This should be happening over the weekend so I’ll be popping back out there early in the week to see what it looks like.


debra said...

am looking forward to seeing how it all works---and you probably are, too

hope said...

My first thought was, "How cool!" followed by, "But I bet that's a photographer's nightmare, lighting wise."

Glad to hear a solution is in the works. Best wishes! What? You don't need're GOOD at what you do. ;)

neena maiya (guyana gyal) said...

I can't wait to see what you'll do with all this :-)

Anonymous said...

That's pretty wild looking. You know what it reminds me of..a Japanese room. You know how the walls look sectioned. The sections are covered with a semi see through heavy, waxed paper. The festival sounds fun.

Kim Ayres said...

Debra - I'm in the process of setting up a separate blog for the Wigtown event where I'll be uploading photos and blog posts most days. It should make for a bit of an adventure :)

Hope - I'm going to have to take some studio lights in with me, but a lot of the photos I'll be taking will be out and about in Wigtown. And thank you for your confidence in me :)

Guyana-Gyal - it's either going to be great, or a very public humiliation. Either way it will make a good blog post :)

Allen - I see what you mean. However, hopfully in a few days there will be white boards up instead :)

AA said...


Kim Ayres said...

Adila - and not a little terrifying :)

Pat said...

Great to have such an accommodating Festival Manager. Hope it is a howling success and you don't get too exhausted. Wish I could come.

Kim Ayres said...

Pat - fortunately I'm being supplied with a room in a self-catering flat almost in the middle of the town, so I can manage my energy levels much more easily.

And it would be lovely if you could come. Meanwhile, we'll just have to keep working on an excuse to get me down South again :)

Unknown said...


Kim Ayres said...

I hope so...

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