Every year we design a gathering of the minds and hands to give you – our Craft Members – a chance to re-group, meet, greet and listen to some incredible shining lights in craft and design. These are humans we have hand-picked because we think their work philosophies, their attitude and their successes are something to behold. This is our Craft and Design as a Career conference.
We want you to reflect on what YOU do through the stories of other sensational tall poppies who haven’t been afraid to stick their necks out in the name of craft and design.
This year we are totally value-adding:
· Two days not just one
· Better value than any “like” conference we can find in Australia
· Cosy venue conducive to networking and making friends
· Speakers being flown in from afar
· Inspiring break-out workshop by international designer Nathan Jurevicius
· Advice Labs to give you the chance to have some one-on-one feedback on your products and social media
· Custom craft installations in the space
· Fancy pants goodie bag commissioned by Kat Kalindi that you will want to keep and use again and again
· Specially curated Reading Room for browsing, resting, learning and reading
To be honest, it’s more like a mini-festival than a conference. And we don’t think we need to use the word “inspiring” to get you over the line, because it’s much, much more than this.
Who are our speakers?
She’s the Director and Janitor of Kester Black. She’s a total success story who has made something very special out of nail polish. She’s a colour magician, she’s totally got The Eye and she’s wrapped her brand up in a program of genuine ethical giving back to the community. And. Well. Given how much we love the handmade and our hands – she’s the one that adds pizzazz to our hard working digits.
Bianca Mavrick loves bold forms and clever colour palettes. She loves to create unconventional, maximalist statement jewellery that packs a visual punch. She’s also an advocate for Craft with a big C. Having come through our retail shop with heaps of professional development support – she’s suddenly an ex-emerging maker. She’s climbed the hill and she’s here to share some snappy stories of her success.
Cath Hope comes from the other side of the counter. As a designer, product developer and someone who genuinely loves the retail environment, she is here to share her history, her story and her tough attitude towards what makes a good product. She doesn’t believe product is a dirty word and neither should you.
*BONUS! Cath will be part of our Product Panel Advice Clinic next to Sarah Weston and Beck Jobson. Bring up your humble handmade product and hear what the big guns have to say. If you dare.
LUCY SIMPSON Contemporary Aboriginal Art & Design
Yuwaalaraay woman, rad designer, mother and business woman with nerve. She is the powerhouse behind Gaawaa Miyay Designs which mixes design, textiles, homewares all wrapped up in her desire to bring the stories, philosophies and art of Contemporary Indigenous Australia to the world.
We’ve waited patiently to have Lucy speak because she’s just been too damn busy and popular before now!
MAE FINLAYSON Textile Artist and Academic
If you are any kinda craft-nerd, being able to be in the same space as Mae is such a pleasure because she is a thinker and a do-er with more ideas than any one person could see out in their life. Interestingly, she is quite obsessed by unfinished and abandoned craft projects. She does not shy away from all the big questions like “What is craft? But what is art?” but her answers are completely accessible and beautiful. She’s here to talk but has also made a craft installation with fellow artist Holly Leonardson. Together they’ve also made a Craft Zine you can pick up from the Reading Room.
Maker, weaver & Founder of the One Million Stars to End Violence Project, Maryann's other interests include architecture, gardening, mental health and business. Maryann's goal is to be a Master Weaver or a 'matua u'u' a Samoan Master Weaver, someone who is practised at holding things together.
She has been doing an amazing job at bringing things together in her One Million Stars to End Violence Project – a world-wide venture that has seen thousands of people learning to weave a star, embodying mindfulness and coming together in a global act of craft. A recent Board member for Craft Victoria, Maryann can teach us all a thing about crafting community and the meaning of making.
NATHAN JUREVICIUS (CANADA) Animator, Illustrator and Vinyl Toy Maker
To me, Nathan is living proof that dreams can come true. He had the nerve to call out to the world many many years ago “Anyone wanna help make toys from my designs?” and the rest is history. And oh, what a history. His most acclaimed project to date is Scarygirl, an ever-evolving world of characters manifested through graphic novels, limited edition collectible toys, games and an animated feature film in the works. And then, just the other day, I saw him blowing glass with a master craftsman for IKEA! But at his heart Nathan is a really great storyteller, and so much significant craft really does come down to good narrative.
* BONUS! Nathan is also running a masterclass workshop called “How to Generate Ideas”. It’s an extra $25 for any one attending the conference.
Olivia Poloni is gonna give it to you straight. Calmly and measured. The low down on how NOT to be THAT artist who gets a reputation amongst curators as someone who is “hard to work with”. Olivia is another powerhouse who gets things done. She is more do than talk, so you are lucky to get the chance to hear her on the stage. She is currently the curator at Craft Victoria, but has previously worked internationally on all sorts of art projects.
Editor, writer, grammar enthusiast, Penny loves art and she loves craft. She understands deeply the connection between making and using words, because to her writing is a craft. Take note when Penny explains the ins and outs of writing succinctly about the work you make. And about how to make every word count. And what her mum might think about your press release.
As well as the editorial director at The Good Copy, a Melbourne-based writing studio and grammar school, she is a regular ‘grammar enthusiast’ guest on ABC Radio Melbourne and co-founder of Crossword Club (Collingwood). She may have also founded a skipping club at some point.
Radical crafter, organiser, mother, activist, gardener, writer and lover … and that is just the start. Rayna is a do-er with heart. She mixes making with politics and friends. She gained infamy through her street art adventures in cross stitching fences. She gained further notoriety as a feature person in the film “Making it Handmade”. She also worked for the Australian Tapestry Workshop and has had a number of solo exhibitions as an artist who uses craft techniques. Listen to someone who has made a career out of never productifying her craft.
TIM ROSS Man About the House
He’s comedian, a breakfast radio larrikin and a man who likes architecture. He wrote a book recently too. So what can he tell us about craft and careers?
Aside from being incredibly creative in terms of the way he looks at life, Tim has a niche appreciation for the crafted details that make up these very unique Australian homes that are his passion. Tim understands that our homely worlds are special when they are handmade and designed with care. He understands the materials and the specificity that have gone into the best design of home in Australia.
Plus, let’s face it, Tim has crafted a pretty awesome and niche career for himself based on what he really really likes. Tick!
Sat 12 – Sun 13 August 2017
At 361 Little Lonsdale St, Melbourne (old 1000 £ Bend site)
Double Day Pricing
Craft Member $165
Single Day Ticket (Member) - SATURDAY $95
Single Day Ticket (Member) - SUNDAY $95
Single Day Ticket (Non-Member) - SATURDAY $150
Single Day Ticket (Member) - SUNDAY $150
Single Session (Member) $40
Single Session (Non-Member) $55
View the speaking schedule here