I was honoured to be inducted into the Dyer Craft of the Nine Trades of Dundee last night, at their annual dinner held at the Royal Tay Yacht Club, by Deacon Steve Flack.
Thank you to Tim Heilbronn and Derek Shaw who nominated me for membership, and to all the Dyers who gave me such a warm welcome, as only their second female member in their 326 year history.
It was lovely to catch up with many of those who have supported or worked with me throughout my career, especially my Art School tutors Bill Barr and Dave Herbert, along with fellow Rotary members and fellow trustees from Dundee Museum of Transport.
We were entertained by excellent after-dinner speakers Prof. Steve Murdoch, the Deacon Convenor of the Nine Trades, Iain Murray, David Lord, editor of the Evening Telegraph and Ryan Galloway of Dundee City Disability Sport.
The Dyers of the 16th Century were known for being smelly and dirty due to the effects of the dying process; “They were not considered suitable material to be town councillors”. Their distinctive blue gloves were worn to cover the stains of the dye on their hands.
With fewer people working in the trade, dwindling numbers led the Dyers to make the decision in the 1990s to open its membership to ‘Masters working in colour’ to protect its traditions and carry on their charitable work and train craftsmen of every trade. Their membership is now swelled with architects, sculptors, designers, photographers and artists.
Each year, the Dyer Craft also award prizes to top-performing students graduating from Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art.