The Gallery was designed by Bungendore architect Maurice Barnes and built in 1994 to create the ideal environment for exhibiting wood and other media. The Gallery is built entirely from Australian materials, including Jarrah posts, beams and staircase; Tasmanian Oak floors, Ebonised Victorian Ash frames, and New South Wales Flooded Gum wall paneling. We take the view that a gallery should be a "work of art" in itself, and invoke the same diligence, creativity and passion that the best makers put into their work.
The Main Gallery occupies 500 square metres on two levels and has been integrated around an historic 1883 house, parts of which are retained in their original form. In 1998 the house was restored and modified to become Café Wood Works with dining for over 100 people.
Artistic Director David MacLaren sums up the ambience of his special place as follows:
“During concerts in the Furniture Section of the Gallery, with musicians such as Australian Living Treasure Don Burrows and cellist David Periera there was a "perfect stillness" - musical notes, people and place all come together in performance and expressed for me just what we are about. We provide the place to let craft and art be on stage.
When I began the Wood Works in 1983, across the road in a heritage building built originally as a general store, my statement was that the Wood Works would "provide a place for wood workers to display their works, where diversity was encouraged and fine craftsmanship essential". Thirty years on the "place" is our purpose built gallery. I believe our space is unequalled anywhere in the world for the display of woodcraft, studio furniture and wood art.”