By Justin Flynn

A group of local artists is attempting to turn a warehouse in the Ocean Grove industrial estate into an artistic hub.
The warehouse has already been given a spruce up with Debra Jackson, Steve Parkhill, Pam Wansink, Lance Nutt, Kaz McGlynn and Erica Wynn all showcasing their work at the Marine Parade address.
And they want other local artists to move in with them.
“We’re seeing what sort of response we get,” Debra Jackson said.
“The front is being assessed for a cafe and there’s some possibility of having a monthly craft market out the front.
“We have been taking artists since September and have six studios up and running and have room for more.”
There are currently eight artists working from the warehouse, most being Ocean Grove locals with a couple from Barwon Heads and Leopold.
There is a mix of media including painting, printmaking, drawing, collage, sculpture, ceramics, textiles, lead-lighting and leather work. One artist specialises in the art of bonsai plants.
Pam Wansink moved in and said she loves the extra space to work in.
“I’ve never had space just to do art,” she said.
“It’s great to be able to concentrate on art. It would be great to get our art out there and bring people to us.”
Steve Parkhill is in a similar situation.
“There seems to be an influx of baby boomers that have retired or retired early and taken an interest in doing their own art,” he said.
The opportunity at 17 Marine Parade became available but needed to be shared due to the sheer size of the building.
“We put out an expression of interest for artists with a wonderful response and so we are slowly expanding and are looking for more artists to join our arts group,” Debra said.
“We have called the studios Red Dog Art Studios, which is the name of our seven-year-old golden retriever.”
The group is part of the Bellarine Arts Trail, where more than 100 artists have registered for the event which takes place on 4 and 5 November.
To find out more, email Debra on debra@debrajackson.com.au

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