How did this all come about?
In 1986 we were camping in the Grampians with our children and decided to head to the Lower Glenelg National Park. We stopped overnight in Port Fairy and never got any further. On our last day we decided to attend the auction of the cute little cottage under the Norfolk pine at the end of William St to see what was behind the doll’s house like façade… and the rest is history.*
We had experienced cottage accommodation in Tasmania. Even though this concept hadn’t yet hit the mainland we felt No.1 was perfect. It wouldn’t be the usual holiday house sitting empty and unused and was a way we could share this special little place with others.
The Studio’s journey has been a little different.
I am, amongst other things, an artist and once worked almost exclusively on textiles. My Studio was originally in the mudbrick “shed” at the bottom of our garden, in Somers. As the commercial side of my business grew in the early 90’s it started to take over our home and when the old beach shack up the road came on the market it was a logical move to make. The house was in a very poor state but it didn’t take much to make it a good working space. I would walk to the bus stop in front of the Studio every morning with my children. While they went to school, I went through the gate to work.
This was my creative space for several decades and was also used by my daughter Jess, at times, for her photographic work. Life changes, as did my work and the Studio deteriorated further. A decision was needed on whether to allow the Studio to deteriorate beyond repair or take some action.
Jess had worked between the US and Australia for many years. She had long dreamed of an old beach shack where she could live when she was here and rent to guests while she was away. She had never considered the Studio.