Craft Australia commissioned specific articles that reflect the achievements of the past 40 years and that investigate the new directions of Australian cultural practice as part of our 40 year celebrations. These articles appeared exclusively through our monthly online publication, CA enews, the voice of the sector. Each monthly issue has a dedicated 40 year topic. These included a focus on the various mediums of practice such as furniture, ceramics, glass, textiles and jewellery.
The Craft Australia Image Bank is a unique image archive of the Australian Studio Craft Movement from the 1960s to the present day. The Image Bank is part of the Craft Australia national historical collection and includes over 25,000 35mm slides of original artwork across the disciplines of gold and silversmithing, textiles, ceramics, glass and wood. This includes extremely rare material from the 1960s and 1970s that predates the establishment of most of Australia's tertiary training programs in craft and design and their associated libraries and research collections. The slide collection is the most comprehensive collection of original artworks by Australian craft practitioners and designers practicing in Australia in the mid to late twentieth century.
The Research Centre has developed an e-journal, craft + design enquiry, as a forum to promote and disseminate the research excellence generated by the sector. The Centre calls for research papers on specific themes and research areas. The papers are peer-reviewed by an international panel of reviewers and published online in craft + design enquiry. The Research Centre provides links to research reports published by the sector and relevant to the sustainability of Australian craft and design appraising growth and trends in the sector. The research presented on the website is used to advocate on behalf of the sector and influence policy to achieve sustainability through practice and industry.
The 2011 national online forum addresses issues of sustainability within craft and design practice. Sustainability is a multifaceted concept for our sector. The aim of this forum is to identify what the main areas of concern are for makers and to bring these to greater prominence through the voice of the artist. Throughout the year we have featured these stories on the Craft Australia blog and the CA Enews. Over 25 artists from the areas of textiles, design, furniture, jewellry and many more are featured with their unique approach to sustainability. These case studies make for a compelling read as they address a range of issues including upcycling, using renewable materials and generally addressing the broader philosophy of responsible production.
Craft Australia has again conducted the 'share your stories' survey to gather data about Australian crafts people and designers operating small businesses or creative micro industries. Craft Australia will collate these findings to establish a picture of micro businesses. This data will be the basis of information to advocate for small businesses in the creative industries sector.
American curator, writer and historian, Vicki Halper is visiting Australia in April from 1 – 21 April 2011. Craft Australia is bringing her to Australia because of her expert knowledge of contemporary craft and visual arts practice. This was the basis of her recent book, Choosing Craft: A History Told by Artists, which describes the influences that have shaped American craft through the writings of the artists.
This view of Australian craft and design is beneficial for Australians as it will bring Australian work to the attention of American audiences. Vicki Halper is a highly regarded curator and writer in North America. She specialises in modern art of the Pacific Northwest and crafts of the United States. She is a former associate curator of modern art at the Seattle Art Museum and recent James Renwick Senior Fellow of the Smithsonian American Art Museum.
The 2009 online forum is based around key issues faced by the Indigenous craft and design sector such as ethical practices, education and authenticity.
Those with an interest in Indigenous cultural practice or contemporary craft and design are invited to have a look at what is being talked about, and view the images, videos and skype conversations.
You can also take part as a member. Once a member you can do a range of things:Join in the forum discussions, upload images that might be of interest to the right way membership, take part in conversations about the highlighted projects that will occur from time to time, add events to the calendar and chat with other members.
Selling Yarns 2: Innovation for sustainability was a conference and workshop program that addressed contemporary Indigenous craft and design practice. It expanded on the themes of the first conference and focused on innovative Indigenous craft and design practices, the relevance of mentorship, networking and skills development. Importantly the artistic work and experiences of Indigenous urban artists from the south east region were paralleled with those of top end and non-Indigenous artists. The Selling Yarns 2 program followed the success of the first conference, Selling Yarns: Australian Indigenous textiles and good business in the 21st century, held in Darwin in 2006.
Craft Australia's 2006 national online forum, Youth@craft·design, was designed for young and emerging craftspeople, students, professional makers, and designers to interact with some of Australia's most successful emerging craft and design practitioners. The forum engaged the sector in dialogue on the themes pathways, manufacture, marketing and export as entry points to sustainable professional practice.
Read the blogs, see the videos and use the resource material in your journey to a successful practice.
Craft Australia's 2004 national online forum, Interact: Contemporary craft in a digital future, published eight discussion papers written by esteemed craftspeople and writers that addressed the impact of new technologies on contemporary crafts practice and theory.
The forum remains available as a resource to encourage and stimulate discussion and debate. Read the papers, order the hardcopy publication or access the teachers' notes.