Northwest Designer Craftsmen (NWDC) was founded in 1954 to promote excellence of design and craftsmanship and to stimulate public appreciation and interest in fine craft. Artists in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana and Alaska, who work professionally in clay, wood, glass, metal, fiber, and/or mixed media, may apply.
NWDC Bylaws require members to:
- Be a designer, artist, or craftsperson who has achieved a high standard of artistic and technical proficiency,
- Subscribe to high ethical standards in all matters pertaining to his or her art and craft,
- Show an interest in promoting public awareness of and appreciation for design, artistry and craftwork,
- Have an interest in actively participating in the work of NWDC.
Applications are accepted from August 1 through October 31. Acceptance to NWDC is by jury requiring majority vote of the membership. Notification of acceptance is in early December. If accepted, membership dues are $50 per year.
A sample of the application is provided below.
Questions? Contact Membership Chair Liz Axford, NWDCMembership@gmail.com.
Why Members Join
- Members get to know and network with members, all of whom are considered among the best in their fields. Friendships are made. Superb potlucks are consumed.
- NWDC provides members with opportunities to exhibit throughout the region. In 2018, we have a member exhibition at the Washington State Convention Center during the last three months of the year. In 2019, we have a Spring show scheduled at the Schack Art Center in Everett and a Fall show scheduled at Allied Arts in Richland, WA.
- At its heart, NWDC’s mission is education. Our quarterly programs provide excellent updates on contemporary craft, and its practice, for both members and the public. The Living Treasures Project educates and celebrates a legacy of fine craft in the Pacific Northwest.
- Planning is well underway for a combination of a symposium, exhibitions and workshops in 2020 to commemorate NWDC’s 65th Anniversary. This symposium is in cooperation with the Schack Art Center in Everett. The exhibitions will be curated by invited jurors with national reputations enabling our members to show their work to influential decision makers.
- NWDC has built partnerships with regional museums, such as the Bellevue Art Museum (BAM), offering programming and contacts that will sometimes feature our members and their work. NWDC members Carol Gouthro and Lanny Bergner will be exhibiting in the BAM atrium in late 2018 and into 2019. A retrospective show for deceased Lifetime Member Ron Ho takes place at BAM in mid-2019. Ron was the subject of our most recent Living Treasures video which premiered in 2018. This exhibition is in partnership with NWDC.
- Our quarterly education programs create opportunities to showcase our members and attract the public to understand and collect craft. In 2018, 12 of our members were featured in a panel on Contemporary Basket-making at the Whatcom County Museum in conjunction with a major national basketry exhibition. Many of our members showed images of current work at our annual Image Bank Image Sharing Program. And several studios of our Whidbey Island members will be open for a self-guided studio tour in October 2018.
- The Living Treasures Project has produced seven videos featuring noted Pacific Northwest craft persons and advocates of the crafts. The program educates the public about fine craft and highlights NWDC’s mission.
- NWDC’s Website and Facebook pages help collectors find our members and view their images.
- Volunteer opportunities allow members to be active in the organization and to deepen relationships with fellow members. These positions create an opportunity to develop leadership, as well as practical skills such as hanging exhibitions and curating shows.