Artwork by the late Douglas Shire artist Alison Gotts features in a captivating retrospective exhibition on display in the Foyer of the Council Chambers in Mossman.

The paintings and travel sketches feature colourful depictions of well-known, mostly local, locations across Mossman and Port Douglas.

As a former President of Douglas Arts Group (DAB) Alison was an influential member of the arts community and encouraged artistic development in the Shire.

Alison’s husband, Digby is grateful for Council’s support and the opportunity to display her beautiful artwork for the public to enjoy.

To support the arts community of the Shire, Council offers the gallery walls of its Mossman Foyer to local artists to display their work.

Alison’s displayed artworks are for sale and can be viewed for the month of November.

Alison’s Story & Inspiration

After a 33-year career of teaching and teacher training, as well as running a fruit farm and bed and breakfast at Cape Tribulation, Alison retired from TAFE in 2005 and started drawing through Douglas Arts Base, with painting taking over her spare time around 2009.

Art became a major part of her life, with her focus on searching for a medium that could most easily fit into her love of hiking. Sketching using pen and ink with a watercolour wash became her preferred option as the equipment could easily fit into her backpack.

With her husband Digby, she walked the entire Appalachian Trail (3500km) over 6 months in 2010, addicting them to long distance hiking, and helping to make the decision to sell the farm so they could walk more. Her breast cancer in 2011 pushed that agenda even harder, so renovations were completed and the farm sold by 2014. They did manage several long walks, with 600 km in South Australia on the Hans Heysen trail in 2015, 800 km in 2016 on the Pacific Crest trail in the USA and 400 km on the Pennine Way in the UK in 2017. An end to end of New Zealand was high on her agenda.

By December 2017, she and Digby were getting itchy feet again and investigating options for moving south when her Stage 4b Serous Uterine cancer with a likely terminal diagnosis came through.

The year 2018 was spent coping with surgery, chemo and radiation treatments as well as a ruptured disc preventing her from walking for 5 months.

Her cancer returned visibly in December 2018, within a month of finishing treatment, despite every doctor assuring her that things were looking good.

She finally passed away in Mossman Hospital in mid-May 2019.

The art around you today is a small selection, mostly local, from her paintings, urban sketches and travel sketches from the last 5 years.