Australian Design Centre is a contemporary craft and design organisation igniting creative ideas and building cultural vibrancy. We take a lead role developing and supporting Australia’s craftspeople and designers to build audiences for their work globally. We do this through our extensive exhibition, festival, touring, retail, publishing and learning platforms.

In 2023, Australian Design Centre continues to support growth in creative practice in craft and design; grow national and international opportunities for artists, particularly First Nations artists; and involve audiences in cultural activities that enrich their lives.

Exhibition Highlights

Unravelling Queerly
7 February – 22 March 2023

Artists: Nicole Barakat, Samuel Luke Beatty, Andrew Chan, Luke George, Nadia Hernández, Kate Just, Raisa Kabir, Blake Lawrence, Arone Meeks and Ahilapalapa Rands.

Being through making describes the central role crafting and creative work play in exploring self/identity. Unravelling Queerly focuses on artists who use textile and fibrecraft to express their unique voice and unpick complex subject matter. Practices such as weaving, crochet, embroidery, quilting, and sewing have a rich history with LGBTQIA+ artists, makers and designers. These labour-intensive processes enable sharing of personal and cultural narratives and create vibrant inter-cultural, intersectional and intergenerational sites for dialogue on contemporary queerness. Unravelling Queerly champions artists who embrace, rework and push the boundaries of textile-based art and craft form.

Part of ADC’s Sydney WorldPride program, the exhibition will be accompanied by an exhibition in Object Space and Queer Mart: A Darlo Maker’s Market.

Mutukaku Ngura – Motorcar Country
30 March – 24 May 2023

Artists: Ngilan Margaret Dodd, Pinuka Margaret Yai Yai, Kim Dodd, Kayla Gayla, Amy Yilpi, Bridget Baker, Fiona Dodd, Collette Stewart, Kathy Dodd

In this special collaboration Tjanpi Desert Weavers partners with Australian Design Centre to present an exhibition of exciting new work.

Across the APY Lands, motorcars are laid to rest, twisted metallic and glass shards glittering under the endless sky. When a car is set alight, the plastic and upholstery disintegrate under the flames leaving behind a sculptural wire skeleton and rusted bonnets and doors reminiscent of dry desertscapes. This series of hanging fibre sculptures were created by weaving native grass onto the metal car seat frames salvaged from the remains of burnt out motorcars.

GOOD NATURED: design art architecture
1 June – 27 July 2023

This exhibition highlights artists, makers, designers, and communicators who are using their practice to address climate issues and create good outcomes.

Ten practitioners from the fields art, design and architecture, with additional practitioners and information showcased in deep ‘layers’ of material for audiences to interact with, absorb and activate.

JamFactory Collaboration
3 August – 27 September 2023

In the 50th anniversary year of JamFactory we celebrate by bringing a special showcase to Sydney.

Inaugural MAKE AWARD: Biennial Prize for Innovation in Australian Craft and Design
6 October – 22 November 2023

Australian Design Centre presents a major new national craft and innovation award in 2023 and 2025. The MAKE AWARD is a biennial award open to creative practitioners (artists, craftspeople, designers) working across all craft disciplines including ceramics, glass, wood, metalwork, textiles and fibre and jewellery.

The Award will feature creative practitioners working with new materials or using materials in new and innovative ways with a prize pool of $45,000.

Sydney Craft Week Festival
6 - 15 October 2023

Sydney Craft Week is a city-wide festival of making held each year in October that presents the latest in contemporary craft as well as offering amazing opportunities to learn new skills in workshops and buy from local artists.

In Object Space, our window gallery on William Street, we will present a further seven exhibitions throughout the year including:

  • Alchemical Worlds: Reflections (Agnieszka Golda, Jo Law)
  • Chili Philly returns for Sydney WorldPride
  • An exhibition by the winner of the Profile 2022 Kirsten Haydon
  • An exhibition by the winner of the Seed Stitch Contemporary Textile Award textile artist Lynn Pavey

Events and Festivals

Throughout the year we participate in festivals including Sydney Festival, Art Month, Design Canberra, Sydney East Art Walk and have relationships with many others.

In the Centre we present up to 100 events a year including artist talks, forums, tours, community and stakeholder events, and workshops

ADC On Tour

In 2023 ADC On Tour will see seven exhibitions tour to ten locations across Australia:

Living Treasures: Masters of Australian Craft / Prue Venables

Made/Worn: Australian Contemporary Jewellery

Profile: Contemporary Jewellery and Object Award

Seed Stitch Contemporary Textile Award

SIXTY: The Journal of Australian Ceramics 60th Anniversary 1962-2022

Good Natured: design art architecture

MAKE Award: Biennial Prize for Innovation in Australian Craft and Design

Find out more about ADC On Tour here.

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