citizen of craft
deadline for applications
tba in 2024
People who physically make objects understand that the making is only one aspect of creating culture: we need admirers and friends who are knowledgeable and thoughtful in their reception of our work, and who champion its grand diversity. This award is specifically for someone who is not a craftsperson, but without whom the craft community would be sorely diminished.
The first Honorary Citizen of Craft Award went to Sheryl MacKay for her enthusiastic, long-term support for the craftspeople of this province. By celebrating their work, Sheryl invites a broader audience to understand the skill, intelligence, and heart of our community – much broader than we could ever cultivate ourselves. The Craft Council of British Columbia is devoted to gaining recognition for this vibrant territory within the arts sector and we are deeply grateful for Sheryl’s ongoing appreciation.
Please note that there is an application fee for this award – $30USD – as this allows us to use Slideroom to engage master jurors from around the province to view, assess and discuss each submission.
Need a little help writing a nomination letter? Click here.
Citizen of Craft 2023 Awardee Carol E. Mayer has been a supporter and advocate for ceramics for over 35 years, since starting research at the Koerner Gallery of Ceramics. While not a potter herself, she has worked closely with BC potters to understand the technical virtuosity of ceramics, developing a real love and respect for BC ceramics – including their cultural, community and individual value.
With vast experience in ceramics curation, research, as well as ceramics publication, Carol has been a non-stop and much-needed supporter of the craft – and is therefore this year’s Citizen of Craft.
Carol has published widely about ceramics, including A Discerning Eye: The Walter C Koerner Collection of European Ceramics, Don Hutchinson: The Artful Potter, Transitions of a Still Life and The Space In Between: The Contemporary Works of Sally Michener and Tam Irving: Pleaed to Meet You- Introductions by Gwyn Hanssen-Pigott: Playing with Fire – Ceramics of the Extraordinary. As a Curator of Ethnology and Ceramics at the University of British Columbia Museum of Anthropology, Carol Mayer wrote The Potter’s Art (UBC Press, 1997) and Made of Clay: Ceramics of British Columbia (D&M, 1998). In tribute to the opening of the Museum of Anthropology’s redesign in 2010, Carol co-authored The Museum of Anthropology at the University of British Columbia with Anthony Shelton.
She is the founding president of the Northwest Ceramics Foundation that advocates for the dissemination of knowledge about ceramics through education, exhibitions, programming and publication. She founded the NWCeramics Award of Excellence and currently chairs the awards committee.
She is vice-president of the Pacific Arts Association (North America) and a board member of the Pacific Peoples Partnership (the only Canadian NGO working in the Pacific.) She has received fellowships from the Smithsonian Institution and the Sainsbury Research Unit, and has been granted numerous awards, including from the Canadian Museums Association (where she is an appointed Fellow), the International Council of Museums, the BC Museums Association, and life membership in the Potters Guild of BC. She has also received the President’s Medal of Excellence at UBC, the Independence Medal from the Republic of Vanuatu for her cultural contributions, and the Pacific Arts Association. Manu Dala (Frigate Bird) Award for outstanding achievements in the study of the arts of the Pacific.