Ends on September 1, 2017

Canberra is taking up its mantle as a global city of design. That reputation rests on a proud history of design excellence and experimentation, from the Griffin’s visionary city plan to today’s leadership in craft and research and practice across all design disciplines.

In 2017 DESIGN Canberra will be inspired by the spirit of Modernism — a celebration of the creativity and experimentation for which Canberra’s mid-century architecture is acclaimed, as home to some of the finest modernist buildings in the country, public icons and private homes.

We are inviting contemporary craft artists and designers to develop new and original work interpreting Roy Grounds’ iconic  Academy of Science, also known as the Shine Dome or Martian embassy — Canberra’s quintessential modernist building — for a signature DESIGN Canberra exhibition in 2017.

The 2016 DESIGN Canberra festival was a great success, attracting over 69,000 people over a month of events, exhibitions, digital campaigns, activations, tours and workshops. As the major outreach activity for Craft ACT: Craft + Design Centre, the festival creates opportunities to promote contemporary craft and design to broad and engaged audiences, explore cross-disciplinary collaborations, and forge marketplace connections.

It’s anticipated the Shine Dome exhibition (title TBC) will garner significant public and media attention and continue to build on local, interstate and international recognition of Canberra’s design identity. It will align contemporary craft and design with the best and most intriguing creative vision for a growing festival and provide a platform for other initiatives within the festival to forge closer ties and new relationships between craft and design and architecture.

Designers are encouraged to embrace the spirit of experimentation in their contemporary re-imaginings of the Shine Dome. Both individual and collaborative submissions are welcome.

How to apply:

  • If you are not currently a member, join or pay the entry fee due: 5pm Friday 1 September 2017
  • Complete the online form HERE due: 5pm Friday 1 September 2017
  • Deliver work: Tuesday 3 - Friday 6 October 2017, 10am - 5pm
  • Pick up works: late November TBC

The general terms for the exhibition are as follows:

  • Exhibition submissions are free for current Craft ACT members – become a member from just $66 HERE
  • Non-members will be charged $70 to submit their entry – this must be paid online at HERE before you deliver your work.
  • Entries may come in any medium from a craft and/or design discipline.
  • All entries must be available for inclusion in an exhibition for DESIGN Canberra in November 2017 (venue TBC) and work must be collected by the entrant at the exhibition’s conclusion.
  • Online form and entry fee (for non-members) are required to be eligible for entry.
  • Cost to ship works will be the responsibility of the artist.
  • Work submitted for exhibition must be available for sale with the usual 35% commission payable to Craft ACT.

Ends on August 11, 2017

Brief to artists:

Each AM and APM Craft ACT member is invited to contribute a recent work to the exhibition. New work is encouraged, but recent work that reflects your current practice and that has been made in the last couple of years is also appropriate. Please submit 2 works for curatorial consideration. Each work can be a single object or a small series. Please contact me to discuss works larger than 1m in any direction. The exhibition will be installed in the Craft ACT gallery and so propose works appropriate for the space. We will be calling for volunteers to assist with installing and demounting.


Key dates:

Exhibition dates: 22 September – 4 November 2017

Exhibition opening: Thursday 21 September 2017

Online submission for curatorial consideration: 10 August 2017

Deliver work: Tuesday 5 September 2017

Demount: 6 November 2017


How to submit work:

1.      Complete online submission by 10 August 2017

2.      Deliver selected work to Craft ACT on Tuesday 5 September 2017

3.      Promote the exhibition through your networks, invite friends and collectors

4.      Volunteer to assist with installing and demounting

5.      Collect your work from Craft ACT on Monday 6 November 2017


Call for Papers

Calling designers, writers, bloggers, publishers, researchers, collectors and design lovers. Object | Subject will explore the way design speaks to us, and the way we speak about design.

It begins with a premise that writing is essential to the future of design – promoting understanding, providing reflections, interpreting the past and imagining the future -but extends to a broader consideration of design practice as cultural and artistic language. Object | Subject is a new platform to explore and respond to emerging changes, current issues and promised opportunities within the sector, to develop new audiences and bridge scholarly and popular writing in a digital age.

The forum will bring a fresh perspective to contemporary craft and design in Australia, new insights into collections and practice, shifting priorities and emerging opportunities and the changing worlds of craft and design.

Topics authors might wish to consider include but are not limited to the following:

– Popular and academic writing

– Design scholarship v. online communities

– Sustainability, ecology & technology of design

– Radical traditions

– Indigenous design

– Self-design

– Thing theory

– Intersections/co-constitutions of design and craft

– Design histories, fictions, visions

– Design and difference

– Enduring design and ephemerality

– Designing doom and gloom

The conference will take place during the DESIGN Canberra festival, which celebrates and promotes Canberra as a global city of design and forges marketplace connections and audience development for design and makers. Extend your stay and enjoy tours, events, exhibitions, and activations from the festival program over the weekend.

Guest Editor:

Professor Craig Bremner, jointly Professor of Design at Charles Sturt University and the University of Southern Denmark.

Scientific Committee:

Rachael Coghlan, Artistic Director DESIGN Canberra and CEO, Craft ACT

Penny Craswell, Founder, The Design Writer, Creative Strategy Association, Australian Design Centre

Dr Geoff Hinchcliffe, Senior Lecturer, Design, School of Art & Design, Australian National University

Sarah Mason, Director ACT Writers Centre

Dr Carlos Montana Hoyos, Associate Professor, Industrial Design – Faculty of Arts & Design, University of Canberra

Dr Lisa Scharoun, Associate Professor of Graphic Design – Faculty of Arts & Design, University of Canberra

Object | Subject is realized with the contribution of Copyright Agency Limited Cultural Fund

Submission Guidelines

All proposals will be submitted through Craft Act submittable page, and must include:

  • Title 
  • Abstract which clearly and concisely describes the subject (max 400 words)
  • Presenter's or instructor’s name, affiliation, contact information, and brief biography (max 200 words)
  • Additional presenters or instructors, if any

Presenters must obtain all necessary authorizations and clearances from their organization(s), prior to the start of the conference. Presentations shall be unclassified and cleared for release to the public. At least one presenter/instructor and the panel chair and all panelists must register for the conference and pay the applicable registration fee.  

The full papers will be submitted after abstracts have been accepted.

Key Dates

17 July 2017: Deadline for Abstracts (by midnight AUS Eastern Standard Time)

3 August 2017: Notification of accepted Abstracts + Registration opens

31 August 2017: Early bird registration closes

29 September 2017: Deadline for Full Papers

9-11 November 2017: Conference

Registration & Fees

Registration fees will be announced by late June 2017. It is expected that prices are likely to range from 180 AUD to 500 AUD including students and early bird rates.


All papers submitted to OBJECT | SUBJECT will undergo a peer-review process. Selected papers from the symposium will be published in an online edition of fusion journal (established by Charles Sturt University & the University of Lincoln, UK in 2012). This publication will investigate the contribution that contemporary craft and design makes to society, and establish a dialogue between craft and design practice and cultural, social and environmental concerns.


All questions about submissions should be emailed to publicprograms@craftact.org.au


DESIGN Canberra 2017

7 – 26 November 2017

DESIGN Canberra celebrates and promotes Canberra as a global city of design – a living design laboratory from the time of Walter and Marion Griffin's visionary city design a century ago, to iconic experimental modernist architecture of the 1950s and 60s, through to contemporary and sustainable design developments today.

The festival explores the best contemporary craft, design and architecture, develops new and expanded audiences, forges marketplace connections and unexpected collaborations, and is a source of inspiration.

Throughout November 2017, over 100 events, exhibitions, talks, tours, activations, markets, collaborations, artist studios and open homes will be showcased as DESIGN Canberra, transforming the nation’s capital into a new platform for the best in design. The festival, now in its 4th year, is for all interests and ages and most events are free. The 2017 festival will build on the success of DESIGN Canberra 2016, which saw over 69,000 people attend, almost tripling previous attendance records.


Living Rooms is the DESIGN Canberra showcase of the best new architectural projects in Canberra. It focuses on domestic architecture and opens homes to the public on each Sunday of the festival. It was the breakout program of 2016, attracting over 2,800 people over four weekends. The aim of Living Rooms is to show how important good design is to day-to-day living, the value of engaging an architect and to celebrate architecture, design and craft in Canberra.

Requirements for included homes:

  • Should be designed by an architect or feature a renovation designed by an architect.

  • Should be a ‘recent’ design, not older than 10 years.

  • Must be willing and able to be open to the general public for between 1 – 2 hours on one Sunday during the festival in November (the opening date will be determined in coordinating the final selection by location, but will be one of November 12, 19 or 26).

  • Will need to be willing to host a pop-up exhibition of a craft artist or designer within the home on the open day. This is done in sympathy with the home and at a manageable scale.

  • Will require the Architect to be present at the opening of the home and willing to engage with the public about the design.

  • Will require the owner and/or architect to identify and remove, or address, any hazards prior to the opening.

  • Architects and home owners should engage to promote their involvement in the Living Rooms program through their networks and social media.

Who and what is involved:

Home owners or Architects can nominate a home for inclusion, with either acting as the main contact for DESIGN Canberra. However, the Architect should be involved in the opening of the home to the public, to engage with the public about the design.

Participants in the program will be expected to promote their participation in Living Rooms through their networks and social media.

Architects and home owners, and individual homes, may be called upon to be ‘talent’ in media for the program.

What will DESIGN Canberra do?

DESIGN Canberra festival will manage the Living Rooms program overall, including selecting and coordinating open dates and times among the nominated houses. We will work with our partner, the Australian Institute of Architects (ACT Chapter) in selecting the homes.

DESIGN Canberra will promote the Living Rooms program through the festival’s marketing and publicity.

We will provide volunteers to be present on the day the home is open and provide the signage (a sandwich board) for outside the home, as well as festival programs and some other information to have inside. As with 2016, we may park a BMW in your driveway as part of our partnership with Rolfe Classic BMW and have Holly Komorowski greet attendees as part of our partnership with home by holly.


If your architectural project is selected to be part of Living Rooms, you will be asked to pay a participation fee. The fee will contribute towards a hard-copy flyer specifically for the Living Rooms program that includes (project) images and contact details for all the participating architectural practices. This is designed to capitalise on the demand for follow-up meetings with architects that emerged from attendees of the 2016 program.  The participation fee is payable on acceptance of the Expression of Interest, which will occur by July 2017. Craft ACT will provide instructions to pay the fee and it must be paid in full within 21 days of acceptance and is non- refundable. Payment of fees confirms your participation and promotion in DESIGN Canberra.

The participation fee for Living Rooms in 2017 will be $220 excluding GST for members of the Australian Institute of Architects.

For non-members of Australian Institute of Architects the fee will be $440.

Craft ACT's Accredited Professional Membership fee is $250.00, we will contact you to make payment after your application has been approved.


Accredited Professional members are professional craft practitioners and designers whose outstanding contributions demonstrate a high standard of artistic merit and technical skill who have local, national and international experience and standing.

The Craft ACT Membership Sub-committee will assess and notify applicants of their status within four weeks, if you require your application to be expedited please get in touch

Please read through the APM information package, member benefits and insurance information documents available on the membership page of our website  and if necessary to contact Craft ACT at membership@craftact.org.au before submitting an application. 



  •   Artistic Merit - demonstrate excellence of artistic merit. 
  •   Innovation - demonstrate an evolution in the concepts of their work.
  •   Technical Skill - demonstrate a high standard of technical skill. 
  •   Professional Standing - submit a CV demonstrating ongoing professional activities in both your specialised field and the broader arts sector.


  • Individuals whose work demonstrates a consistent, high level of artistic and technical standard are eligible to apply for Accredited Professional Membership. 
  • Applicants should have a professional approach to their work and to the business of maintaining a professional career, though it is not essential to be full time artists.
  • It is not a requirement for applicants to have undertaken formal studies. 
  • Applications are ineligible where work submitted is undergraduate work. Applications by post graduate students will be considered on a case by case basis according to prior practice.

Craft ACT is always in need of professional publication quality images of our members work, please assist us to ensure the information and images we have reflect your current practice.

Craft ACT's Associate Membership fee is $250.00, we will contact you to make payment after your application has been approved.


Associate Members are emerging and established professional craft practitioners and designers who have strong local experience and engagement. 

Applications are welcome anytime during the year. Ensure you meet and address the criteria requirements below and understand member benefits and insurance information. If you have questions, email membership@craftact.org.au before you submit your application. 

The Craft ACT Membership Sub-committee will assess and notify applicants of their status within four weeks, if you require your application to be expedited please get in touch.


  • Individuals whose work demonstrates a consistent, high level of artistic and technical standard are eligible to apply for Associate Membership. 
  • Applicants should have a professional approach to their work and to the business of developing and maintaining a professional career. 
  • It is not a requirement for applicants to have undertaken formal studies. 
  • Professional craft practitioners and designers seeking insurance to support their professional practices. 
  Assessment Criteria 
  • Artistic Merit - primary criterion is a demonstrated high level of artistic merit. 
  • Technical Skill - demonstrate a high standard of technical skill. 
  • Professional Standing - submit a CV demonstrating their commitment to ongoing professional activities in their specialised field.