Maggie Hansford has been a resident of the Alberni Valley for the past 30 years and now resides in Heritage Place. Hidden in her closet for the past few years has been a treasure: a six-foot-by-eight-foot needlepoint of the first moon landing.
This monumental piece of artwork, featuring 100 percent wool strands and metallic thread, took her 14 years and more than 2,000 hours to finish. Now suffering from macular degeneration and only having peripheral vision, Hansford’s days of needlepoint have ended.
The idea started with her late dad Ken Hansford. He had Maggie’s daughter make a painting of various photos from NASA and was going to use this as a template.
“He asked me to do it for him and so I had to tear out his work and start at the beginning. I got the special linen canvases from ladies in Nova Scotia and put it on a couple of sawhorses with heavy beams to stretch it. I started in 1986 and finished it in 1999.”
“I thought that the United States would be interested in having this but all of the embassies and also NASA said no. I would like it to find a home for it and I would accept any reasonable offer,” said Maggie.
Hansford has had her needlepoint on display at Heritage Place, behind Echo Village, at 4360 Heritage Lane. The piece will only be displayed for a limited time, although Hansford would entertain offers for a permanent home for her artwork. Anyone interested in seeing the piece can call site manager Doug Murray at 250-735-0306 for entry to the building.