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15 July, 2021

Gazza’s Goss: Arts are fine in Douglas

I HAVE to confess, I wasn’t a big follower of the ‘Arts’ until I lived in Christchurch, New Zealand. It was particularly after the earthquakes, that I discovered how pivotal they were to a recovering community.


DAB Members Get Creative At The Monday Morning Pottery Class

Fortunately, there have been no major disasters in our area for some time, but connecting with the Arts in the Douglas Shire is still very important for many people.

One great facility, based in Mossman, is the Douglas Arts Studio Gallery, better known as DAB.

Located in an amazing Heritage listed building, now owned by Douglas Shire Council, it was originally a branch of the Port Douglas National Bank of Australasia. Architect Lange L. Powell designed the elaborate ‘Greek Temple’ façade of this timber building to give people confidence in the bank.

It seems fitting that such a beautiful building is now home for an Arts Studio Gallery.

The Douglas Arts Base was the brainchild of Marjorie Norris in 2002 who, with other local artists, saw a need for basic arts education courses for everyone.

As a result, Douglas Arts Studio Gallery Incorporated became the first group of its kind in the region to open its hearts and minds to the local community.

Don’t be fooled into thinking this is just a place to turn up and view a few paintings.

This place is all about involving the community and is in fact 100 percent run by volunteers with approximately 140 members each year.

Its facilities include a studio gallery where art classes are held and members can exhibit and sell their artwork and there are two sheds out the back for pottery, mosaics and glass work.

A wide variety of art classes are offered where participants can learn to draw, paint, do pottery, mosaics, or work with glass. DAB caters for absolute beginners and also the more experienced artists, so there is something for everyone. 

Some classes are tutored, while others are ‘peer groups’, where you bring along your project and work, to talk and share ideas with other like-minded people in a very relaxed atmosphere.  There are weekly classes, with courses that run for a number of weeks and workshops that for a half day or full day.

DAB also holds approximately four exhibitions a year, where members are invited to exhibit their artwork…. so why not join and get involved.

I’m off to get artistic, so for now it’s Gazza signing out.

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