Benedict House in Queanbeyan open for arts

Share Canberra's trusted news:

HISTORIC Benedict House in Queanbeyan is set to become the centre of a new arts hub in the region with a big launch this Saturday September 13 of the Benedict Arts Precinct.

Benedt house - Copy

The event is supported by local arts organisations, including Artists Shed Inc., a newly formed arts association, and the Lost and Found Office design collective.

With free daytime concerts in the Music Room, the highlight will be an evening concert by multi-instrumentalist Dave O’Neill.

Arts installations at the House
Arts installations at the House

There’ll be art installations and talks by local artists, a public talk by master furniture craftsman Evan Dunstone, historic tours of the old House, and drop-in workshops at the newly-incorporated Artists Shed, maker’s demonstrations at the Lost & Found Office studios, live music and entertainment and gourmet food at the Refectory Café.

“We wanted to create a new experience for visitors to the region, combining great food, historic ambience and exciting art and design, all set within the building and grounds of this spectacular former convent” says Jess Markham, who together with husband Rory is the current custodian of Benedict House.

“The revival project has also drawn support and investment from innovators within the business community with Boettcher Law and Kazar Slaven Chartered Accountants also building a presence within Benedict House” adds lawyer husband Rory.

A hall at the House
A hall at the House

“The Artists Shed has a long history of staging live performance and music in unusual spaces, so Benedict House is a great new venue to add to the opportunities now available for musicians performing in the region” says Tim Keeble, director of music and Vice President of Artists Shed Inc.

As preparations for the launch get underway, Benedict House and the adjoining property, which houses the Lost and Found Office and Artists Shed studios, is being transformed into a creative hub for all art forms.

Lost and Found Office designs
Lost and Found Office designs

“We also invite artists and community members to join the Artists Shed association in its new home within the precinct, where art studios and workshop spaces are now available” adds Dennis Mortimer, public officer for the Artists Shed.

Queanbeyan and its immediate region are home to many exceptional artists, and “Citynews” predicts that members of the general public will enjoy exploring the work of both new and established artists.

Benedict Arts Precinct launch, at Benedict House, 39 Isabella Street, Queanbeyan 10am until late, Saturday, September 13. Free entry.

Dave O’Neill concert is ticketed (bookings essential) via email to

The running order for the Benedict Arts Precinct launch is as follows:

All day – Refectory Cafe open 10am – 8pm

Brunch, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner available

All day – Artists Shed drop-in art workshops 10am – 4pm

Drop in and try our free art workshops! All materials supplied

– Portraiture with Dennis Mortimer

– Ink & Wash with Hilary Mackay

10 Refectory Cafe open for Brunch & Lunch

10.45 Lamp making demo @ Lost & Found studio (Bobby)

11am Historic tour of the house & grounds (Rory) – Meet in Foyer

Noon   Official launch – in Courtyard

1pm   Art tour with the Curator (Ben) – Meet in Foyer

1.45   Upholstery demo @ Lost & Found studio (Bobby)

2pm   Historic tour of the house, grounds and studios (Rory) – Meet in Foyer

2.45     Furniture restoration demo @ Lost & Found studio (Ben & Geordie)

3pm   Acoustic music @ The Music Room (Tim)

3 – 4.15pm   Meet the makers @ Lost & Found studio (Bobby/Ben)

4.15 pm   Art tour with the Curator (Ben) – Meet in Foyer

5.45   Artist talk – Evan Dunstone

6.30   Cafe open for dinner

8.15   Dave O’Neill concert.


Who Can You Trust?

In a world beleaguered by spin and confused messages, there's never been more need for diverse, trustworthy, independent journalism in Canberra.

Who can you trust? Well, for more than 25 years, "CityNews" has proudly been an independent, free, family-owned news magazine, serving the national capital with quality, integrity and authority. Through our weekly magazine and daily through our digital platforms, we constantly and reliably deliver high-quality and diverse opinion, news, arts, socials and lifestyle columns.

If you trust our work online and believe in the power of independent voices, I encourage you to make a small contribution.

Every dollar of support will be invested back into our journalism so we can continue to provide a valuably different view of what's happening around you and keep free.

Click here to make your donation and you will be supporting the future of journalism and media diversity in the ACT.

Thank you,

Ian Meikle, editor

Previous articleSocials / At the Canberra Hospital Foundation Function, National Arboretum
Next articleSocials / At Save the Children ‘Dinner and Dust’, D’ Browes, Narrabundah
Helen Musa
“CityNews” arts editor

Leave a Reply