In April 1974, nineteen interested art students met at “Tomintoul” the home of Jean Hill who had been asked to start an art class for the Nowra Technical College in Milton. At first they set up residence using the lounge room of Jean’s home. This group raised money for all essential equipment needed for art students.
These students had to move from home to home for some time, eventually along with the Potters, they were given the keys of the “Millhouse” in Ulladulla. This house was situated opposite the harbour in the grounds of the Civic Centre. From there the artists practised and established themselves as “Artists in Residence”. The art students held their first exhibition in the Millhouse and opened their rooms during the holiday times for visitors and locals to view and many sales were made.
Stages of Growth
Unfortunately the group lost the use of the Millhouse after about seven years when the building was moved to another location. By this time the group had tripled in size and had to move from place to place until they were fortunate enough to acquire the use of “Kendall Cottage”, Princes Highway, Ulladulla. There, they were able to conduct their monthly meetings and enjoy demonstrations by outside artists on a regular basis. Membership grew considerably and the need for larger premises became evident.
In 1995, the TAFE building in Milton closed its doors. The Millhouse Committee approached the Council with a view of renting a suitable space to utilise both as a gallery and a meeting place. After a lot of work, arrangements were made to set up a permanent gallery. The Potters, who had been with the artists earlier also joined us in the Milton venue and together with Council set up the Courtyard Studios. It was wonderful to finally have a gallery space and home of our own.
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