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RDS Craft Awards

The RDS Craft Awards (formerly RDS Crafts Competition) has contributed significantly to the development and growth of the craft sector in Ireland over many years. Following a review of the Awards, the structure and focus of the Awards is changing in 2018. This involves (1) a restructuring of the RDS Craft Awards which will be in the form of significant bursaries (5 x €10,000) for emerging craft makers (2) the creation of a new €10,000 bursary called The RDS Irish Craft Bursary which will be managed by the Design & Crafts Council of Ireland (DCCoI) and open to makers in the DCCoI's Portfolio programme.

The DCCoI's Future Makers Awards & Supports programme which provides cash supports for students and emerging crafts & design practitioners – is the qualifying competition for the new RDS Craft Awards. To be eligible to apply, an emerging maker must have received a Future Makers Award or Support in the preceding year. This provides makers with the opportunity to demonstrate the progression of their skills and body of work in the year since winning Future Makers.

These five significant RDS bursaries are for the development of business and craft skills for those pursuing a professional career in the sector. The award can be spent on further education and training, research, development of new work, mentoring, purchase of equipment, studio improvements, website and residencies.

To be eligible to apply for the 2018 RDS Craft Awards, emerging craft makers must have won a 2017 DCCoI Future Makers Award or Support. To be eligible in 2019, makers will have won a Future Makers Award or Support in 2018.

A judging panel of five craft and design professionals has reviewed the applications from eligible candidates and nine have been shortlisted to attend interviews in the RDS on May 29 & 30 where examples of their work will be shown to the panel. Shortlisted candidates: Adele Walsh, Alan Meredith, Ann McBride, Chloe Dowds, Laoise Carey, Pearl Reddington, Pierce Healy, Sarah Roseingrave, Sophie Kate Curran

Judging Panel

Róisín de Buitléar, Glass Artist (Chair)

Annie Warburton, Creative Director, Crafts Council UK

Joe Hogan, Basketmaker

John Tynan, Head of Education, Training & Development, Design & Crafts Council of Ireland

Siobhán Riordan, Managing Director, Alan Ardiff Jewellery

The Awards will be presented at an invite only event in the RDS on June 20. RDS Craft Awards winners will also have the opportunity show their work to the public on a free stand (value €2,000) at Gifted – The Contemporary Craft & Design Fair which will be held in the RDS December 5-9, 2018.

See rules of entry to the 2018 RDS Craft Awards.

The new RDS Craft Awards is aligned with the RDS Arts Work Programme and its goal of supporting artists to make the transition from emerging to professional practice. At €60,000, the RDS has doubled its direct support to Irish craft makers annually.



For further information please contact:

Dara O'Leary
RDS Arts Programme Manager
Dublin 4
Tel: +353 (0) 1 240 7255
Email: arts@rds.ie

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