Craft Symposium at NGV on 19 September

Ramona Barry asking a question
Ramona Barry asking a question

Craft – the Australian story

2-5pm, Saturday 19 September 2015
National Gallery of Victoria – Ian Potter Centre, Federation Square

What’s the role of craft in Australia today? This symposium will explore the unique connections that craftspersons make between Australia and our region. Speakers will consider what distinguishes Australian craft on the world stage and how it contributes to our contemporary life.


2pm – 3pm – Australian craft in the world

A panel discussion about the value of international exchange for Australian craft and design

Australian craft has drawn greatly from a broad spectrum of overseas influences. Many craftspersons travel to be inspired by other cultures, often forming ongoing partnerships. Asia provides growing opportunities in a growing number of craft fairs and biennales. Australian designers are also increasingly drawn to the traditional skills practiced by artisans in our region.  This discussion is a forum to share experiences about these global connections and consider they can better serve craft in Australia.

  • What’s the place of Australian craft in the wider world?
  • What’s the value of international exchange?
  • What are the regional dialogues that craft enables?
  • What are the ways of facilitating this exchange?

Speakers include:

  • Jane Sawyer – ceramicist and director of Slow Clay
  • Marcus Westbury – founder of Renew Newcastle and presenter of ABC TV series Bespoke.
  • Lou Weis – director of Broached Commissions
  • Ramona Barry – co-author of the Craft Companion (Thames & Hudson)

Listen here.

3:30pm – 4:30pm – Craft in Australia

A panel discussion about the role of craft in Australia

The crafts movement of the 1970s led to the establishment of effective national organisations for promotion of studio practice. While the medium-specific bodies like AusGlass continue, Australia has been without a national body since Craft Australia was de-funded in 2011. What are the learnings of the Parallels conference? What new initiatives can support craft across Australia? Feeding into this panel is a crowd-sourced document Ideas for Supporting Craft in Australia which is open for comment beforehand.

Speakers will respond to nationally crowd-sourced proposals. They will include:

Listen to speakers here and discussion here.

4:30pm – Launch of Garland magazine

SYMPOSIUM IS BOOKED OUT. If you’ve missed out and would like to be part of the conversation, feel free to add comments to a crowd-sourced set of proposals for the future of craft which can be found here.

Eventbright page here.

(Featured image by Marian Hosking: Black swan brooches, black clay and 925 silver, 2015)

5 thoughts on “Craft Symposium at NGV on 19 September”

  1. Please add me to your email newsletter list, if you have one. I HOPE I’ll be able to come to the Craft Symposium on 19 Sept.

    1. Thanks for the support Marilyn. The easiest way to stay in touch is to subscribe to our newsletter using the link in the menu (left-hand on desktop) on this page. It would be great to have a Tasmanian voice there on the day. Are you teaching a craft?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *