Karen Friis recently sold Southampton’s Duffy’s Fish & Chips to pursue a more art inspired life.  She has since found a home at Southampton Arts.

Karen graduated Fashion Design from the Academy of Design in Toronto in 2005.   She opened a successful collective shop for Toronto designers, and artists, in the popular Queen West area. After a couple of years in Queen West she found her way to the beautiful shores of Lake Huron.

After 12 years the pandemic took its natural toll on her restaurant business and she found the transition from restaurant owner/operator to gallery manager a natural one. Her background working with designers and artists makes this position ideal. Add to that her decades of experience in business management makes this a perfect match.

Karen Friis now serves as Manager of Southampton Arts.  She is thrilled at this exciting opportunity.  Karen says “I’m honoured and humbled by the amazing artists in our community. It’s a privilege to be surrounded by their work every day.”



School Director

Darlene McConnachie previously headed Southampton Art Centre as Art School Director from 2013 to 2017… and now she’s back!

After taking time to travel and pursue her own creative journey through her home-based business crafting one-of-a-kind journals, Darlene has returned to SA once again to lead education initiatives.

Darlene spent most of her career in office administration while dabbling in the arts part time. She moved to Southampton with her husband in 2010 when they became empty nesters, and became a member of the Southampton Arts Society Board. She is currently President of Shoreline Artists, a local artists group, who encourage the creation, appreciation and exhibition of work by its members.

Darlene is looking forward making new acquaintances and partnerships, as well as renewing old friendships at SA.



Marketing & Outreach

Amelia was raised in Owen Sound, Ontario and went to Wilfrid Laurier University, studying Near Eastern Archaeology and Canadian History. She participated in multiple digs during her schooling, including a six-week excavation at Bamburg Castle in northern England. She also completed a post-graduate certificate at Fleming College in Museum Management and Curatorship and was honoured to be hired as an Assistant Archivist at the Grey Roots Museum.

However, she was involved in a life-changing car accident in the winter of 2009 and was placed on disability. She became trapped in herself and in 2012, her support team insisted that she needed to do “something”. By luck and by fate, she enrolled in a course at the Southampton Art School, simply because it suited her husband’s work schedule, and discovered her love for encaustic and the healing immersion of creative flow.

She is excited to be part of such a dynamic team at Southampton Arts and is ready to make community connections in Saugeen Shores.

Gallery Sales



Gallery Coordinator

The natural beauty and art enriched community led Judy to Saugeen Shores. With an abundance of artistic learning opportunities, she is thrilled to begin her new adventure!


With over 30 years experience in customer service and a lifelong love of art, Judy looks forward to connecting customers with local artist's work.


Come meet Judy at the Southampton Arts Centre!