Moira BEATY Born 1922 -
BiographyBorn Jessie Moira Munro in 1922 in Prestwick, Ayrshire, in 1931 she attended the First Year General Course under Hugh Adam Crawford and alongside fellow painters Joan Eardley and Margot Sandeman at Glasgow School of Art in 1939. In late 1941 Moira was invited to apply to the Foreign Office and from 1942 –45 she began her war service at Bletchley Park as a cryptographer working directly on the breaking of Enigma codes.
During this period, she continued to create artwork and worked with a group of artists within the organisation, undertaking drawing classes and exhibitions. In 1947 Moira resumed her Diploma Course in Drawing and Painting at G.S.A. Large numbers of ex-service students at the Art School helped create a more than normally mature working environment. After gaining her diploma Moira attended Teacher training Course at Jordanhill College, and following the six-month course was appointed to Holyrood Secondary School. She moved with her Husband Stuart Beaty to the Scottish Borders and during in the early eighties, taught sporadically as a supply teacher at Hawick High School. There she found a special relationship with remedial, non-certificate girls who provided subjects for much future painting. Moira and Stuart Beaty’s was often exhibited through The Open Eye Gallery in Edinburgh and this also made possible a group show at the Collins Gallery in Glasgow, the Riverside, Stonehaven and ‘Four Scottish Painters’ in the Cadogan Gallery, London.
In 1990 the couple moved to Barnbarroch, Dumfries & Galloway and from 1997 Gracefield Arts Centre became an important focus. Moira submitted to the selected open exhibition ‘Art Now’ from which ‘The Thaw’ was purchased for the Permanent Collection, and her work has been shown in further selected group exhibitions and the Gracefield stand at the Glasgow Art Fair and Affordable Art Fair, London. In 2001 Gracefield held a major retrospective exhibition entitled ‘Full Circle’ of both Moira and Stuart Beaty’s work which toured to the Hawick Museum and Art Gallery. A full colour catalogue is available from Gracefield.