The Great Alpine Gallery offers different workshops at various times throughout the year, presented by both local and visiting artists.

It is also worth checking out what exhibitions are being held at the Gallery through out the year.

Current Workshops

Previous Workshops

30th March – 22nd June, 2022
Creative Workshop

February 2021
Weaving Workshop

September 2020
Stillness Through Art

online workshop series with Sofie Dieu

Saturday the 17th of September 2020 6-7.30pm From all the workshops that have taken place since June, this is the most important one. It has been designed with the help of Dr. Rob Gordon who is specialised in post-bushfire recovery. It will be delivered by London based artist and counsellor Eleonore Pironneau and artist Sofie Dieu. Together, we will look at anniversaries and rituals to help overcome grief and eco-anxiety.

For this, you will need to prepare your journal and pen. You will also need to gather small objects that are meaningful and will give sense to your recovery journey.

Eleonore will guide you through an object composition / meditative exercise and prompts will be shared to give you ideas how to prepare for the first anniversary of last summer’s bushfires. This first anniversary is according to Dr Rob Gordon the most important one to support recovery. If you have suffered due to fires and drought, it is important for you to prepare and be supported. 

Please register to the Creative Ritual workshop now.

This art and meditative workshop is offered for FREE thanks to the precious and generous support of East Gippsland Shire Council and the Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal

Final Living River Workshop

Free School Holiday Workshop! Assembling Waterbugs: Basketry and Silk and Paper

Wednesday 17th April 10am-2pm at the Swifts Creek Bowls Club

How would you like to spend a day playing with cane, silk and paper to make some gorgeous water critters in the school holidays?

Over the last month the Living River project has been in full swing, with basketry, papermaking and silk dyeing workshops all focused around the Poets Walk beside the river in Swifts Creek. Now it’s time to bring it all together and assemble a swarm of waterbugs!

No previous skills needed and you don’t need to have made a waterbug already, there are plenty that need decorating with gorgeous coloured silks and cumbungi paper. We will also be making mini lanterns to carry. 

Then on Thursday 2nd May, we will be celebrating the completion of the stone cairns along the Poets Walk with a Twilight Waterbug Walk, with the lovely critters all glowing as lanterns.

All ages welcome, children need to be accompanied by an adult for the workshop.

For workshop information and RSVPs phone Tracey Johnson on 0418 221 078, email or find us on Facebook.

Thanks to the Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal and East Gippsland Shire Council for their generous funding.

Living River – The Poets Walk

The Poets Walk was initiated by local resident and poet John Butler, and the plan was to feature verses of his poem, The River, on stone cairns along the kilometre walk. This work was not completed by the time of his death, and the walk has fallen into disrepair. However it is now being renewed and revegetated by the local Landcare group and other community groups.

A local stonemason is rebuilding the cairns, and new plaques featuring verses of the poem will be installed.

Living River is an environmental art project, which will be sited along the Poets Walk in Swifts Creek, home of the gallery. As part of the renewal, The Gallery is celebrating water bugs and river insects in a multimedia temporary exhibition along the riverside of the Poets Walk.

A series of free workshops are being held in February March and April, culminating in the launch of the exhibition on 2 May.

Basketry techniques to make waterbugs and insects. Wednesday 20 February, 10am – 2pm, Swifts Creek Caravan Park.

Cumbungi paper making and mini-waterbug making. Saturday 9 March, 10am – 2pm, Swifts Creek Caravan Park.

Eco printing and silk painting. Saturday 23 March, 10am – 2pm, Swifts Creek Caravan Park.

Assembling waterbugs/putting skins on. Wednesday 17 April, 10am – 2pm, Swifts Creek Bowls Club.

Stonemason Ted Cole – demonstration of stonemasonry Date to be announced.

Grand launch. 2 May, twilight, Poets Walk (more details to come).

All ages and experiences are very welcome to come to the workshops. RSVPs are essential to ensure adequate materials are provided for participants. Please contact the gallery

May 2018
Great Alpine Arts Trail

The Great Alpine Arts Trail coming up on 5th and 6th May 2018 has a range of fabulous workshops on offer. If you are coming up for the weekend why not treat yourself to a hands on art/craft workshop? Bookings are now open. 

Indigenous Basketry with Cassie Leatham

Join Cassie Leatham for a demonstration and talk showcasing Indigenous techniques for weaving floor mats, baskets, and string bags. Cassie will show some of the plant fibres she uses in her beautiful work, also.

When: Saturday 5 May 10.30am – 12.30pm

Where: Ensay Winery, Great Alpine Road, Ensay

Cost: $20 Booking essential as spaces are limited to ensure maximum enjoyment and learning.

Booking: Book now

Cassie Leatham is a Taungurung/Wurundjeri woman of the Kulin Nation. Cassie was born on Gunai Kurnai country and is an active member of the Indigenous community and member of Ramahyuck Aboriginal Corporation in Sale, Gippsland. Cassie’s father Ron is a senior Elder at Ramahyuck.

At a young age Cassie demonstrated a talent in art using a variety of different mediums and techniques and it was through discovering her Aboriginal heritage that she began exploring traditional ways in Aboriginal artefacts and creating arts and crafts using traditional materials and methods. Cassie is self-taught but listens to the stories from Elders’ stories to inspire her pieces. Cassie has devoted her time to teaching Koorie youth these methods and techniques, as well as non-Indigenous people.

From Pits & Pith to Pasta with Annie Patterson

Nullamunjie is a true single estate olive oil, grown, pressed and bottled on the estate. The olives are processed within 2-4 hours of being harvested fresh from the trees. Join the owner/founder, Annie Patterson, for an informative hour long talk about how this award winning olive grove produces fresh, organic oil that sells world-wide. 

When: 5 May, 10.00am – 11.00am.

Where: Nullamunjie Olive Grove, 290 Bindi Road, Tongio (Take the Tongio Valley, Bindi, Tambo Golf Course road off the Great Alpine Road at Tongio. The Grove is 3 minutes on the right).

Cost: $12.50 includes tea/coffee with home made scone.

Bookings: 5 May Book Now

Anne Patterson

Natural Dyeing with Cath Rayment

Eco Colour from your own backyard.

Discover the tantalizing world of hidden colour waiting to be unlocked, in the plants around you. Learn how to obtain yellow through to orange and then red with Eucalyptus leaves, adjusting the colours after dyeing to discover greens and browns with post mordants. We will also look at other plants on the day, including a brief look at Australian Native Indigo. Get ready for a fun packed day. This workshop is for people who want to eco colour their yarns or fibres for spinning, knitting, crochet, tapestry or weaving. We will be discussing different methods of extracting dyes. Pre and post mordants, what they are and how to use them. Then we will get hands on experience with dyeing yarn. Participants will go home with samples of their dyeing, plus teaching notes to help them remember what was covered on the day.

When: Saturday 5 May, 2018, 10.00am – 3.30pm

Where: 3730 Great Alpine Road, Tambo Crossing (directions given before workshop)

Cost: $50

Bookings: Book now

Cath Rayment is obsessed with Natural Dyeing and all things fibre!

I started my journey into the fibre world with an instant love of wet felting, boot making in particular. After exploring the art of making cosy footwear I discovered spinning. I am as obsessed with spinning as I am with all things fibre, including Natural Dyeing. I have spun yarn from Alpacas, sheep/wool, Samoyd Dog hair, Angora Goats (mohair), rabbits (Angora Yarn) – anything I can get my hands on really.

I love colour and avoided Natural Dyeing as I felt the colours were too weak for my tastes. I didn’t realise half the fun was the ‘discovery of secrets’ and I also hadn’t yet seen colours that enchanted me. Now that I am conversant with methods that enable me to get colours I like, there is no stopping me. I love this journey I am on and hope to impart some of my enthusiasm to others.

Tea and Coffee provided. The view is free! Yes, we’re on top of a mountain and it’s worth coming just for the view!

Participants will be provided with the following: • Latex gloves • All dye equipment • All dye material and mordants • Yarn samples • Notes • A range of Dye books to look at on the day – for your enjoyment.

Participants need to bring: • BYO lunch and a treat for morning/afternoon tea to share. • Aprons • Comfortable shoes • Warm clothes

Needle Felting with Sarah Carr

Suitable for years 10+, beginner and intermediate.

Ready to try needle felting but not sure where to start? At this workshop you will learn all the techniques to get you started with needle felting, and to hone your existing skills. Needle felting uses a sharp needle to turn wool roving into 3D objects. The wool is agitated by the action of the needle so that it sticks together, creating a solid fabric. You will also have the opportunity to turn your creations into a mobile or an artwork using other natural materials. Needle felting may seem like a complicated craft but the joy of needle felting is that you can follow your own creativity. You’ll catch on quickly and make your own fuzzy, felt creations in no time!

When: Sunday 6 May, 9.00am – 1.00pm

Where: 3730 Great Alpine Road, Tambo Crossing (directions given before workshop)

Cost: $50

Bookings: Book now

Morning tea is provided, and includes beautiful mountain top views while eating yummy homemade goodies.

Sarah has had a life-long love of an eclectic mix of arts and craft. After moving to Swifts Creek seven years ago to pursue her career as a high school teacher, she found her love of felting though her involvement in the CWA. Sarah has since honed her skills to create a collection of beautifully crafted pieces. She particularly enjoys crafting with felt because of its fluidity (and forgiving nature!)

Knotless Netting with Lynn Lochrie

WORKSHOP FULLY BOOKED, please contact Lynn for details of another workshop later in the year.

Learn how to make string from natural plant materials, and then create a beautiful pendant or small bag, using the Knotless Netting technique. All materials are provided, all you have to bring is your lunch, scissors, and an old hand towel to wrap wet materials. Maximum of 10 participants, BYO lunch, tea and coffee provided.

When: Sunday 6 May, 10.00am – 4.00pm

Where: Ensay Winery, Great Alpine Road, Ensay

Cost: $50 per person

Bookings: email –

Lynn has been teaching for three years both in the Great Alpine area, and in Cranbourne at the Friends of RBGV Basketry Group, and has been a member of the Basketmakers of Victoria for eight years. Her favourite materials are Native Plants such as Cumbungi, Dianella, and Lomandra, with which she make hats, baskets, and sculptural pieces. Her basketry is exhibited at the Great Alpine Gallery in Swifts Creek; in the Friends Centre at Cranbourne RBGV Australian Garden; and with Basketmakers of Victoria, with whom she helps on Display / Demonstration stands at several shows throughout the year. She has been visiting the Swifts Creek area with her family for over 45 years, and loves the community spirit and wonderful people here.

March 2018
Calling for Rain

Workshop with Sofie Dieu

We are thrilled that Sofie will be joining us again in March, running workshops in schools and the community in preparation for her exhibition Calling for Rain at the East Gippsland Art Gallery!

Free Community Workshops

Tuesday 06/03, 10-4pm – Great Alpine Gallery – random weaving basketry

Wednesday 07/03, 9-12pm – Great Alpine Gallery – felt & ‘offering’ making

Wednesday 07/03, 2-5pm – Benambra Neighbourhood House – felt & ‘offering’ making

Bring seed pods attached to stems, brushes and apron. To book for the workshops please call Tracey Johnson on 0418221078 or email

Works created by the community in these workshops will be included in Sofie’s EGAG exhibition, which will open on Friday 16th March and run until 14th April.

School Workshops

Monday 05/03, 10-12am – Swifts Creek P-12 School – felt making & cloud painting

Thursday 08/03, 9-12pm – Omeo Primary School – felt & ‘offering’ making

Exhibition opening

Friday 16/03, 5.30-7.30pm – East Gippsland Art Gallery – Nicholson St, Bairnsdale

To download the workshops flyer click here

August 2017
Sofie Dieu

Workshops in Benambra and Swifts Creek, 2017

The Great Alpine Gallery is pleased to announce SOFIE DIEU as our guest artist for the Great Alpine Artist Residency for 2017. As part of her residency Sofie is presenting a free workshop in Benambra and Swifts Creek.

Belonging and attachment – how to paint the geographical self

Thursday 24th August, 10am-12noon at Benambra Neighbourhood House Wednesday 30th August, 10am-12noon at the Great Alpine Gallery, Swifts Creek.

Using ink, gouache, brushes and paper as media, Sofie will facilitate an exploration of what it means to live in regional Victoria (Swifts Creek/Tambo Valley/Benambra). What motivates you to live here? What type of attachment do you have for this area? How do you describe your sense of belonging? By associating words, memories, and notions of senses to the places that count most to you, you will paint and write “your” local experience. 

Bring an apron/painting clothes, 3 mugs/glass/jam pots per person (for ink and water), and any soft watercolour or calligraphy brushes if you have them (if not that’s OK – but the more the better.)

RSVPs for Benambra to Trudy Anderson, ph 5159 9208. Refreshments provided at Benambra Neighbourhood House. RSVPs for Great Alpine Gallery to Tracey Johnson, ph 0418 221 078.

Materials kindly sponsored by Derivan Matisse. Supported by East Gippsland Shire Council’s Arts & Heritage Grants. 

Winter Workshops

Bring a creative spark into your winter – enjoy the cosy indoors with fibres, silks, inks or paper in a winter workshop.

Basket over a Mould with Lynn Lochrie

Sunday 28 May, 10am-4pm
at the Ensay Winery, 5094 Great Alpine Rd, Ensay

  • Make a beautiful basket over a mould from native plant materials. 
  • Bring a pair of old scissors, an old towel, and an apron.
  • Cost: $50, includes all materials. BYO lunch. Maximum 10 people. 
  • Bookings: ph Lynn 0437 759 610 email

Silk Painting with Ann Bingham

Sunday 25 June, 10.30am-3.30pm
at the Community Centre, Great Alpine Road, Swifts Creek

  • All dyes and equipment supplied, one silk scarf provided, extra silk can be purchased on the day.
  • Cost: $70. BYO lunch. Maximum 6 people, minimum 3 people.
  • Bookings: ph Ann 0427594472 email

Printmaking with Tracey Johnson & Tiffany Forster

Thursday 27 July or Saturday 29 July, 11am-2pm
at the Great Alpine Gallery, Swifts Creek

  • A very easy printmaking method using printing foam.
  • Cost: $40 per day, includes all materials. BYO lunch. Maximum 8 people. 
  • Bookings: ph Tracey 0418 221 078 email

August 2016
Love East Gippsland Tapestry

May 2016
Wanda Bennett- Artist in Residence

May 2016
Weekend Workshops

Artists from Tambo Crossing to Swifts Creek and Cassilis are offering a range of specialty workshops over the weekend of 28-29 May.

To treat yourself to a creative weekend, book into one of the Weekend Workshops detailed below. 

See the Creative Gippsland website for more details of these and other events throughout Gippsland, and to make bookings.

Wet Felting with Cath Rayment, May 28

May 28, 2016, 9:30am
Battle Point, 3730 Great Alpine Road, Tambo Crossing

Make your own boots or slippers at this one-day workshop.

  • Tea and coffee provided, bring lunch to share
  • Maximum 6 people
  • $75 plus $10-$15 for materials
  • For more information phone Cath on 0428 568 530
  • Bookings at

Monoprint Workshops with Rob Logie, May 28 and May 29

May 28,29 2016, 9:00am-12 noon, 1pm-4pm
Reedy Flat, 103 Logies Road, Reedy Flat. Call into the Old Pub Gallery for detailed directions

Session 1:Introduction to water based monoprints, Session 2: Introduction to oil based monoprints, Session 3: Expanding on sessions 1 and 2, Session 4: Further exploration of techniques and materials.

  • Morning and afternoon tea available for a donation, light lunch available, $15 for a meal, $5 dessert
  • Maximum 5 people per session
  • $45 per session, $160 for 4 sessions, half, full or two days
  • For more information phone Rob on 5157 3281
  • Bookings at

Eco Printing with Carole Pepper, May 28

May 28, 2016, 9:00am to 3.00pm
Swifts Creek, 208 Swifts Creek East Road, Doctors Flat

Learn the art of eco printing, creating rich imprints from natural materials on paper, and create you own eco-printed silk scarf. Bring a collection of leaves you want to use and 2 pieces of cardboard for transporting wet prints home.

  • Tea and coffee provided, bring lunch to share
  • Maximum 5 people
  • $90 includes all materials
  • For more information phone Carole on 0429 148 033
  • Bookings at

Silk Painting with Ann Bingham, May 28

May 28, 2016, 10.30am to 3.30pm
Swifts Creek, Tambo Valley Bowling Club, Cassilis Road (Swifts Creek-Omeo Rd), Swifts Creek

Learn the art of silk printing. All dyes and equipment supplied, one silk scarf provided, extra silk can be purchased on the day.

  • Tea coffee and lunch provided
  • Maximum 6 people
  • $80 includes all materials
  • For more information phone Ann on 0427 594 472
  • Bookings at

Cyanotypes with Tracey Johnson, May 29

May 29, 2016, 9:00am to 3:00pm
Battle Point, 3730 Great Alpine Road, Tambo Crossing

Learn one of the oldest forms of photography, creating brilliant blue prints with sunlight. Bring objects that create a good shadow on paper.

  • Tea and coffee provided, bring lunch to share
  • Maximum 8 people
  • $60 includes materials
  • For more information phone Tracey on 0418 221 078
  • Bookings at

Melon Basket Workshop with Lynn Lochrie, May 29

May 29, 2016, 10:00am to 4:00pm
Ensay Winery, 5094 Great Alpine Road, Ensay

Make a beautiful basket in the shape of a melon using cumbungi (bullrushes) and grape vine. Bring a pair of secateurs, an old towel for wrapping damp materials, and an apron to protect clothes.

  • Tea & coffee provided, BYO lunch 
  • Free wine tasting and wine sales available at cellar door
  • Maximum 10 people
  • $50 includes all materials
  • For more information phone Lynn on 0437 759 610
  • Bookings at