Deadline: April 13, 2023

In 2009, the Maine Crafts Association began to honor individual Maine craft artists each year by awarding recognition for a body of work that is exceptional or a dedicated career of service. This award confers the prestige and acknowledgment that comes with having the artist’s work achieve a distinguishing mark of excellence. Diversity and contribution to community are paramount to this award.

To nominate a craft artist (self-nominations permitted) please follow the link and fill out the online form. Please note: all craft artists nominated since 2018 will be automatically considered for the 2023 award. 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 with that material.


  • Lifetime MCA membership
  • Award certificate
  • Recognition at the annual award presentation and ceremony
  • Annually created award pin that is designed to reflect the honoree
  • Special press release and website feature
  • Solo exhibition at Center for Maine Craft or Maine Craft Portland
  • Invitation to teach at MCA’s Weekend Workshop at Haystack Mountain School of Crafts
  • Invitation to exhibit at any scheduled Guild Fine Craft Shows (offered by Shop Maine Craft)
  • Inclusion in anniversary exhibitions, such as 10-year, 20-year (to be announced)


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.

2021 vocabulary update: The award program was named the Master Craft Artist Awards, and is now renamed Maine Craft Artist Awards. Our intention with this change is to participate in the progression of language/vocabulary in our field, and society, toward being more equitable, welcoming, and sensitive to the impact of language, due to historical and other connotations, on our communities. Thank you for your patience and understanding as we update the vocabulary throughout our site, beginning with the 2021 content. There are past uses of the previous name in dated material (in old press releases, announcements, or quotes for example) which may remain.