Peninsula Arts, a Brief History
On the 11th March 1954 professional artists from all parts of the Peninsula attended the Mechanics Hall at the invitation of Colin and Maidie McGowan. From this group a committee was formed and The Peninsula Arts Society was born.
Initial meetings were held at the home of Harry and Nan McClelland, in Palm Court Frankston, known as ”the barn”. The group then rented the first floor of the Pier Hotel for a while, moving to a series of other locations at various times, including the space above Ritchies store, which they occupied rent free for 14 years.
The Society eventually purchased a property at 13 Overton Road, Frankston, which served as its studio space for 8 years.
In the early 80s Frankston Council and Mayor Diane Fuller allocated a lease of land in Overport Park to the Society. With money raised over many years by hard working members and committees, the Society built its own studio and gallery on this land in 1988. This remains the site of our current studio complex.
The Society continued to attract new members and expand its program of classes, demonstrations and workshops. To cater for the growing demand the Society built an additional studio, opened in December 1999.
Membership continued to increase, and in 2006 the Peninsula Arts Society once more launched a building program to extend its facilities. The kitchen was upgraded, and a foyer, office, meeting room and store room were added.
Today Peninsula Art’s 500 plus members can feel justly proud of their Society’s place in local history as the original art society in Frankston, and enjoy the excellent facilities provided through the efforts of their dedicated predecessors. The Society, or “PAS” as it is commonly referred to by members, is still run entirely by volunteers.
With its friendly atmosphere and inspiring art programs, Peninsula Arts continues to flourish and prosper through the keen involvement of its members and their vital interest in the visual arts scene.