MCA’s Maine Craft Artist Award Reopens Nominations After Receiving a Gift from the Maxwell/Hanrahan Foundation

The Maine Crafts Association is the proud recipient of a charitable gift from the Maxwell/Hanrahan Foundation in support of the Maine Craft Artist Awards. We are honored to accept this grant to build upon the 14 year legacy of this award by offering new benefits, prompting the reopening of 2023 nominations.

Maine Craft Artist Awards
Honor. Recognition. Excellence.

In 2009, the Maine Crafts Association began to honor individual craft artists by bestowing recognition of an exceptional body of work or dedicated career of service to the field of craft in Maine. The award confers the prestige and acknowledgment that comes with having the artist’s work achieve a distinguishing mark of excellence.

In 2023, two recipients will be selected by a jury guided by the following benchmarks: Excellence in craftsmanship, inspired design, a singular voice or style, and a career of service to the field. Thanks to generous funding from The Maxwell/Hanrahan Foundation, each awardee will receive a $4,000 honorarium in addition to historical benefits and endorsements of the Maine Craft Artist Awards:

  • Lifetime Maine Crafts Association Professional Membership
  • Recognition at the annual award presentation and ceremony
  • Custom-made Award Pin
  • Award Certificate
  • Special press release and website features
  • Solo exhibition at a Shop Maine Craft Retail Gallery
  • Invitation to teach at MCA Weekend Workshop at Haystack Mountain School of Crafts
  • Invitation to exhibit at any scheduled Guild Fine Craft Show
  • Inclusion in decennial and vicennial anniversary exhibitions

We aim to recognize a diversity of voices, backgrounds, cultural heritage, as well as exemplary contributions to the craft community and the field of materials-based practice. To nominate a craft artist or make a self-nomination, please follow the link below and fill out the online form. All artists nominated since 2018 will automatically be considered for the 2023 award.

Nomination deadline: Monday, October 2, 2023

If the artist does not have a good representation of their work or bio/resume online, please follow up the nomination submission with an email to


This award is granted for a body of work and a career of service in the Arts. Nominees’ work is judged through images of the body of work (and/or hands on examination of individual pieces), documentation of the artists’ career through resumes, portfolios, publications, etc. In reviewing the work of artists nominated for the Maine Crafts Artist Awards, the jury is guided by these benchmarks: excellence in craftsmanship, inspired design, a singular voice or style, and a career of service to the field.

Excellence in craftsmanship is demonstrated by work that shows the highest standards of quality, a superior command of the medium far beyond basic and intermediate proficiency skills: attention to detail, and the use of the highest quality materials that further enhance the overall design. Entire works are executed without technical flaws and meet their intended purpose, functioning impeccably. The appropriateness of technique and process are successfully united in pieces that show excellence in craftsmanship.

Inspired design is demonstrated by work whose design shows resolution: excellent composition, employing tension and space to enhance the overall design. Choice of materials and methods shows innovation and proficiency. Inspired design also surprises or intrigues the viewer.

Singular voice or style is an innate part of the established and acclaimed craftsperson’s expression. A conceptual richness evidenced in the work shows the nature, complexion, and execution that mark the individual’s work as distinctive. It sets the work apart, not only qualitatively, but also in achieving an individual identity, readily recognizable as belonging to that maker.