AS the doors of popular Queanbeyan artspace, The Artist’s Shed close, the doors of Benedict House are opening to creatives.
New owners at the former convent, Rory and Jessica Markham have been busy renovating and opening up gallery space. Local artists Dennis Mortimer and Ying Zhang have already taken advantage of the new exhibition space, with more spaces available to local artists and craftspeople.
The Markhams also plan to extend to the building next door and open some of the rooms, including the property’s original external kitchens, as studio spaces for artists in residence.
Musician Tim Keeble is planning with them, with the idea of extending the space to vacant buildings next door. As well, Benedict House will become a creative space, with performance, exhibitions and workshops, in a venture that has been inspired by the Abbotsford Convent in Melbourne where, ironically , long-time Benedict House owner Kate Shelton now has a studio.
Jessica Markham says she hopes to use the old building to its full capacity with functions, group bookings and recitals in both the intimate and larger rooms.
And fear not, the popular café is still open for morning or afternoon tea, brunch and lunch.
Interested artists and entrepreneurs can call Rory Markham 0430 716 544.