Living Treasures

Masters of Australian Craft

Living Treasures: Masters of Australian Craft is an initiative of the Australian Design Centre. The series aims to celebrate the achievements of Australia’s most iconic crafts practitioners, through a touring exhibition and a major monograph publication.  

Living Treasures celebrates the work and practice of exceptional individuals who have demonstrated more than three decades of excellence in their chosen discipline.

The series was conceived in 2004 when ADC reached out to the sector nationally to put together three authoritative panels that would come together to review nominations and select the next Living Treasure. 

The Living Treasures exhibitions focuses on current work – they are not historic surveys. This concept aims to ensure that the work and ideas presented are current reflections of the practitioner’s process and output. Each exhibition is accompanied by a beautiful monograph, which not only celebrates the work but also delves into each artist’s background in more detail, contextualising their status as a leading practitioner of their craft. 

The ninth Living Treasures exhibition, focusing on the work of ceramicist Prue Venables, launches at ADC in August 2019 before commencing its national tour. More information on the development of this upcoming project can be found here. 

The Living Treasures series of nine exhibitions has been supported by the Federal Government’s Visions of Australia program.

 

Image: Prue Venables, Group of forms, black ovals and yellow sieve. 2018. Image by Terence Bogue

Lola Greeno: Cultural Jewels

2014 - 2019

Lola Greeno: Cultural Jewels is the eighth in our Living Treasures: Masters of Australian Craft series. Our first Indigenous Living Treasure, Greeno is a shellworker and artist from Tasmania, whose career spans 30 years.

Nick Mount: Glass

2012-2015

Nick Mount is one of Australia’s most accomplished and celebrated studio glass artists. Nick creates sculptural assemblages that range in scale and character, they offer ‘limitless potential’ and combine a respect for traditional Venetian glassmaking techniques with a wry Australian wit.

Robert Baines: Metal

2010 - 2013

Robert Baines is one of Australia’s foremost artist goldsmiths and a researcher of archaeometallurgy and Bronze Age gold works. Baines created jewellery and large, complex wire works often combining precious metals of gold and silver with plastic and powder-coated elements. These works frequently reference archaeology and draw on abstract forms and ideas.

Jeff Mincham: Ceramics

2009 – 2012

Jeff Mincham is one of Australia’s most prominent and influential ceramic artists with a career spanning more than 30 years. His exceptional craft skills and extraordinary body of work saw him honoured as Australian Design Centre’s 2009 Living Treasure, with a subsequent national tour.

Liz Williamson: Textiles

2008 - 2011

Liz Williamson: Textiles tells the story of this influential weaver’s search to understand textile traditions in relation to her own life and interests, and then interpret those experiences, through her woven cloth, into new ideas and forms.

Marian Hosking: Jewellery

2007-2010

Marian Hosking’s career as a silversmith spans several decades and throughout it she has translated her passion for the individuality and essence of the Australian landscape into jewellery.

Klaus Moje: Glass

2006 - 2008

Hailed internationally as the founder of modern kiln-formed glass, Klaus Moje is not only one of the most influential and iconic figures within the Australian studio glass movement, his significance clearly reaches far beyond. 

Les Blakebrough: Ceramics

2005 – 2007

In a career spanning five decades, Les Blakebrough has become one of Australia’s most acclaimed and influential ceramic artists. His body of work has ranged from earthy functional wares to more recent, delicate forms.