Welcome to the Exe Decorative and Fine Arts Society. We are based in Topsham, and cover the towns and villages on both sides of the Exe estuary south of Exeter. Our purpose is to give our members opportunities to appreciate the arts.

We have a programme of ten lectures on various aspects of the arts, held monthly on Thursday mornings, from September to June. The lectures are illustrated and given by experts in their field. These lectures are supplemented by special interest days where we look in greater detail at a particular topic.

We also have visits to places of interest in the south west, and tours further afield, including abroad. Some of our members take part in activities such as Heritage Volunteering, Church Recording and Young Arts, where we try to involve young people in the arts through initiatives in local schools and colleges.

In 2017, most decorative and fine art societies changed their names to The Arts Society, following the rebranding of the national body NADFAS. We as a society decided to retain our name ExeDFAS while remaining affiliated to The Arts Society.

We welcome new members at any time, although we currently have a waiting list. We invite anyone who is interested to come along to one of our lectures, to see how informative and entertaining they are. Please let our membership secretary know in advance so that a place can be reserved.

Rob Forster, Chairman 2018-21

The Picture of the Month at the National Gallery.

Galleries everywhere are endeavouring to bring their great art treasures to the public who are unable to get to galleries and museums  as once they did. Their curators have prepared short lectures, and the genius of modern technology can give us ‘Virtual Tours’.

Just a ‘taster’ of these facilities is now available on this website starting with lectures provided by our ‘parent body’ – The Arts Society. The section is called The Arts Society plus and has its own drop down menu accessible at the top of this page.

The March Lecture

It is intended that this lecture  be shown on line, -Zoomed at 10.45 a.m. on March 11th. It may also be available on YouTube for a short period after that. These circumstances will be determined by the committee as soon as possible, and this information then related to members early in March.

The Lecture is entitled 

David Hockney - The Old Master of Modern Art


From the early sixties, when he left the Royal College of Art more famous than his teachers, Hockney’s paintings have shown a charm and humour that sets them apart from others of his generation. A naturally gifted draftsman, his love of ingenious visual devices has led him to experiment with a whole range of techniques, from stage design to coloured paper making. From the early abstract expressionist images, through his famous Californian scenes of swimming pools to the photo-montages of the mid eighties, this lecture follows the career of an artist whose wit and imagination has never faltered.


Spring Woldgate by David Hockney

The lecturer on this occasion is to be Douglas Skeggs

He is an art historian with an international reputation, specialising in the Impressionists. He has written an appreciation of Monet and four novels of suspense. He is in great demand as a lecturer and is rather good at ‘painting’ Old Masters himself. He read fine art at Magdalen college, Cambridge


The lecture can be seen live on Zoom at 10.45 a.m., on March 11th. Members will receive the link from the membership secretary some time after March 4th.

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