Canadian Craft Biennial
August 19, 2017 to October 29, 2017

The Art Gallery of Burlington, in collaboration with Craft Ontario, is proud to present the first Canadian Craft Biennial from August 19, 2017 – October 29, 2017. The launch of this inaugural event during Canada’s 150th anniversary will serve as a spotlight to celebrate and educate on the importance of contemporary craft throughout Canada’s diverse history and future. Under the theme Can Craft? Craft Can! the Biennial will explore what and who is ‘Canadian Craft’?

Biennial Call for Entry Banner

Can Craft? Craft Can! Craft Symposium
Friday September 15, Holiday Inn, Burlington
Saturday September 16, OCAD University, Toronto

Eleven sessions covering a variety of themes and approaches, will be presented by forty-four scholars and makers from around the world. Registration information is coming soon!


  8:30 to 9:15         Registration and Welcome Remarks
  9:30 to 11:15  

Making Education: The Changing Nature of Teaching Craft – Part 1

Convener: Dorie Millerson, Assistant Professor, Chair, Material Art & Design, OCAD University

  9:30 to 11:15  

Craft and Wilderness: Combatting Territorial Amnesia

Convener: Amanda Shore

  11:15 to 1:00  

Making Education: The Changing Nature of Teaching Craft – Part 2

Convener: Dorie Millerson, Assistant Professor, Chair, Material Art & Design, OCAD University

  11:15 to 1:00  

Making Sense: Exploring Creative Methodologies

Convener: Julie Hollenbach PhD Candidate, Department of Art (Art History), Queen’s University.

1:00 to 2:00 


  2:00 to 3:45  

The Openness of Craft: Complexity in Current Practices

Convener: Ruth Chambers, University of Regina

  2:00 to 3:45  

The digital ties that bind: Practice-lead research in craft

Convener: Stephen Bottomley, Senior lecturer, Edinburgh College of Art/ University of Edinburgh

  3:45 to 5:30  

Somewhere Between Folklore, Modernity and Utopia: Expo'67 and the development of Fine Crafts and Métiers d'art in Canada

Convener: Bruno Andrus

  3:45 to 5:30  

Craft’s Collaborations

Convener: Mireille Perron, Alberta College of Art + Design

Opening reception of the Canadian Craft Biennial



  8:30 to 9:15       Registration and Welcome Remarks
9:30 to 10:15

Keynote address: Anton Reijners

  10:15 to 12:00  

Craft and Public Art

Conveners: Kathy Kranias, PhD Student, Humanities Department, York University, and Lera Kotsyuba, Research Assistant Intern, Ontario Heritage Trust

12:00 to 1:00


  1:00 to 2:45  

Identity, Craft / Métiers d’art and Marketing – Part 1

Convener: Susan Surette, PhD, NSCAD University and Concordia University

  2:45 to 4:30  

Identity, Craft / Métiers d’art and Marketing – Part 2

Convener: Susan Surette, PhD, NSCAD University and Concordia University


Opening reception of ‘Crafting the Future: A National Craft Student Exhibition


Craft Biennial Residencies

Six makers and six writers/scholars from a range of material disciplines will  spend ten days discussing and making in a creative national incubator. Makers will provide innovative and exciting possibilities for moving the conversation outside academic discourse and encourage public engagement with issues of tradition and innovation, vernacular and global, hand-made and high-tech. Writers will engage in the discussion to explore new ideas and challenge current craft discourse.

Exhibitions: August 19 – October 29, 2017
International Ceramic Exhibition: Anton Reijnders

Biennial Opening Celebrations: Friday September 15, 2017, 6:00 pm-9:00 pm
Lee-Chin Family Gallery, Art Gallery of Burlington

Dutch ceramist Anton Reijnders will present his new work in a solo exhibition.

National Craft Exhibition: Can Craft? Craft Can!

Bringing together seventy makers from across Canada, Can Craft? Craft Can! will present works in glass, ceramics, wood, metal and fibre that address three subthemes exploring ideas of Identity, Sustainability and Materiality.

Craft Ontario Provincial Exhibition: Nothing is Newer than Tradition

Craft Ontario’s Nothing is Newer than Tradition will present the work of emerging Ontario makers that reflect a dedicated engagement with specialized skills and materials. The exhibition will explore how craft materials, tools and processes are creatively reiterated through the hands of a new generation of makers.

Call for entry information, deadline June 9, 2017


AGB Provincial Exhibition: Once Upon a Time

Drawing from the Art Gallery of Burlington’s Permanent Collection of Contemporary Canadian Ceramics, Once Upon a Time will present a special exhibition exploring functional ware from Ontario ceramists. Each artist selected will be represented through both a piece from their early years, juxtaposed against a recent work to explore the progression in their practice.

The Canadian Sesquicentennial Quilt

In celebration of Canada’s 150th anniversary, professional and amateur makers are invited to submit a quilted square to be included in the Canadian Sesquicentennial Quilt that shares their ideas and memories about their region, and of what it means to be Canadian. Submissions are being sought from across Canada until April 30, 2017. Deadline: April 30, 2017:

Download Application Instructions


Garden of Chimes

This community outdoor installation will celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary by inviting the public to contribute to this exhibition by making wind chime pieces during Open Studio Chime Workshops on the following Sundays from 1pm-4pm in the AGB Creative Hub:

May 14 & 28
June 11 & 25

Citizens of Craft

If you respect the original, the personal, the authentic – you are a citizen! Tag, post or plaster your support any way you wish. Just spread the word. #CitizensOfCraft

Who We Are

Formerly the Ontario Crafts Council, Craft Ontario is a not-for-profit service organization that works to have craft recognized as a valuable part of life. We promote and celebrate professional craft through providing member opportunities, and advocate for craft practice by educating and empowering diverse audiences.