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Monday 15 July 2024

The Studio

Welcome to The Studio

At the heart of The Studio lies a long tradition of arts practice and innovation.

We recently added silversmithing and film photography to the highly specialised practices accessible in The Studio, alongside longstanding practices like printmaking. Umbrella now features the only publicly accessible darkroom north of Brisbane.

In our multi-arts space, the creative possibilities are infinite.

The Studio is located downstairs from the Umbrella Studio Contemporary Arts gallery space. It hosts workshops, education programs, creative partnerships and a key access studio user group. Join a workshop, become a member, apply for a residency or talk to our team about a tailored creative experience for your community group, corporate team or school program today!

The Studio’s facilities include:

  • a Takach motorised lithography printing press
  • an etching press (33x60") for relief or intaglio printing, incl. metal plate, woodblock and lino printing
  • screenprinting equipment
  • a B&W darkroom equipped with 35mm, 6x7cm and 4x5" enlargers
  • jewellers' workbenches and silversmithing equipment
  • easels
  • a floor-loom
  • a 3D printer
  • a mounted video projector and screen

Join a workshop

Umbrella regularly presents and hosts workshops in The Studio alongside artist talks, opening events and other public programs in the upstairs gallery space.

Experienced local and visiting artists facilitate and co-host many of these, providing insights to audiences and teaching new techniques to participants.

Explore our workshops and events here.

A workshop participant is being guided through the soldering process by artist facilitator Alison McDonald during one of her Silversmithing and Ring-making Workshops, 2023.

Photographic processing in Umbrella's B&W darkroom, 2022.

Become a member of The Studio

For a monthly fee of $50, Umbrella offers a Studio membership to artists, with a 24-hour key access to The Studio and its facilities.

Our multi-arts space enables the exploration of a variety of arts practices, of which many share commonalities and histories, and provides opportunities for cross-pollination, collaboration and experimentation. With a Studio membership, new members also join a vibrant artist community. 

In addition to its equipment for printmaking, screenprinting, photographic film processing, painting, weaving and other arts practices, The Studio offers some storage for art, sculpture and works on paper as well as amenities. The space is conveniently located in Townsville’s CBD, near public transport with ample street parking.

Learn more about the Studio membership here.

Apply for a residency

At Umbrella, we seek to provide a relevant national and global platform for our talented artist community.

We also invite and accept applications from renowned artists and experts in their field to enable exchanges and connection here in North Queensland.

The call for applications for the Creative Research Residency in collaboration with JCU Library's Special Collections ended on 28 February 2023. We have selected two successful artists to research JCU Library’s Special Collections: Fijian-Australian artist and curator Shivanjani Lal will critically engage with archival documents and images related to the indentured labour industry, and Gurambilbarra-based artist Alison McDonald will continue her research focused on marine algae.

Read more about our artist residencies here.

Sir Russell Drysdale (donor), Sir Russell Drysdale's Gift of Rare books, Printed Australiana: 56 Volumes, 36 publications - the majority having been published during the 18th and 19th Centuries (a selection depicted), JCU Library Rare Book Collection, Ⓒ James Cook University. Photography by Michael Marzik.

Laura Castell with a workshop participant, taking a closer look at a print created during the Woodcut Printmaking Workshop, 2022.

Ask about a tailored creative experience

Umbrella has a vibrant community of talented artists with a variety of skills who make work and facilitate workshops in The Studio.

This means that we can tailor a creative art workshop experience specifically to your interests, needs and skill level – whether you are a school class, community group or corporate team!

Many of our workshops are open to beginners wanting to extend their creativity and learn new skills. Umbrella also curates and coordinates programs for children, youth and artists of all skill levels, including professional development workshops.

Enquire about a workshop experience for you here.

The Studio has received funding support from Restart Investment to Sustain and Expand (RISE) Fund – an Australian Government initiative and the Gambling Community Benefit Fund.

COVID Safe Visits

Umbrella asks that visitors adhere to social distancing, visitor logs, and other COVID Safe directives and procedures as directed.

More COVID Information

Open Hours

Tues - Fri: 9am-5pm

Sat - Sun: 9am-1pm

Gallery closed Mondays, public holidays and during exhibition install weeks.

Follow our social media for updates.


(07) 4772 7109

408 Flinders Street,
Gurambilbarra (Townsville),
Qld, 4810 Australia

PO Box 2394,
Gurambilbarra (Townsville),
Qld, 4810 Australia

Send us a message here

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Acknowledgement of Country

Umbrella Studio Contemporary Arts respectfully acknowledges the Wulgurukaba of Gurambilbarra and Yunbenun and the surrounding groups of our region - Bindal, Gugu Badhan, Nywaigi, Warrgamay, Bandjin and Gudjal - as the Traditional Custodians of the land on which we gather, share and celebrate local creative practice. We pay our respects to Elders past, present and emerging. We acknowledge Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders as the first people of Australia. They have never ceded sovereignty and remain strong in their enduring connection to land and Culture.

Umbrella is a Dealer Member of the Indigenous Art Code. This means we are committed to fair and ethical trade with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists, and transparency in the promotion and sale of artwork. As a Dealer Member and signatory to the Code we must act fairly, honestly, professionally and in good conscience in all direct or indirect dealings with artists.


Umbrella is supported by the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland, part of the Department of Communities, Housing and Digital Economy, and by the Visual Arts and Craft Strategy, an initiative of the Australian, state and territory governments. | Umbrella is supported by the Tim Fairfax Family Foundation and receives funding from Creative Australia through the Australian Cultural Fund. | Townsville City Council is a funding partner of Umbrella's program.