Dimensions is the Saskatchewan Craft Council’s biennial, open, juried, touring exhibition which encourages and rewards excellence in hand crafted work.
Every two years the Saskatchewan Craft Council invites all Saskatchewan craftspeople to submit up to two hand crafted items for Dimensions. Two qualified jurors are tasked with selecting the final pieces, as well as deciding which pieces merit any of the many available Fine Craft awards. The ongoing success of Dimensions depends upon the generous support of a number of organizations including the City of Saskatoon and Creative Saskatchewan. The award sponsors also make a substantial contribution to Dimensions, each focusing on a different area of craft creation. The SCC acknowledges the contributions of sponsors and greatly appreciates their ongoing commitment.
Dimensions has been an undertaking of the SCC for over 30 years, and as we celebrated the SCC’s 40th Anniversary in 2015, we reflect on the history and importance of such an event. In 2015, our jurors selected an exhibition of 36 works by 34 craftspeople. 106 artists submitted 180 entries for consideration.
The original reasons for creating Dimensions are still relevant and can briefly be stated in this way: to promote, acknowledge and reward excellence in Fine Craft.
The Dimensions exhibition encourages makers to strive for excellence and to push themselves creatively and technically. It has enabled some craftspeople to achieve outside of their production work and try ‘one-of-a-kind’ pieces. All artists who apply to the jurying process benefit from the knowledge of the jurors in the form of a public critique: the jurors discuss concepts such as function, intent, innovation, and presentation. Dimensions has also encouraged collectors and purchasers of Fine Craft to invest in the craft community— Dimensions has raised the awareness of many communities within and outside of Saskatchewan. The variety of talent and skill in Saskatchewan is summarized in each Dimensions exhibition: these artists represent a large community of makers devoted to their craft.
Dimensions will continue to adapt and grow; its presence is connected to the vitality of the community and the artisans within. It is one of the few exhibitions that still lets jurors select from actual works, not simply images of works, and it is still one of the few exhibitions in the world that enables makers to converse with the jurors.
The Dimensions Jurors for 2017 were Belinda Harrow, multimedia artist from Regina and the Permanent Collection Consultant for the Saskatchewan Arts Board, and Jenna Stanton, ceramic artist and curator from Medicine Hat’s Medalta.
Multiple events will took place throughout the week of jurying, including an Open House where the public could view of all the works submitted, a Jurors’ Talk, and the Dimensions public Jurors’ Critique.
The exhibition was displayed at the Saskatchewan Craft Council Gallery in Saskatoon from May 20 to July 29, 2017 and will then take off on an 18 month tour.
Grimsby Public Art Gallery, Grimsby, ON • September 30 – November 19, 2017
Godfrey Dean Art Gallery, Yorkton, SK • March 19 – May 7, 2018
Art Gallery of Swift Current, Swift Current, SK • June 30 – September 2, 2018
Lloydminster Cultural & Science Centre, Lloydminster, SK • October 6 – November 17, 2018
Other venues to be announced.
Dates may be subject to changes.
Prizes, presented at an Awards Ceremony following the jurying process, celebrate excellence in craft media as well as outstanding works of creativity and innovation in craft! Awards are presented to celebrate excellence in each craft medium as well as outstanding works of creativity and innovation. The Awards Ceremony took place on Saturday, June 24, 2017 at 7 pm at The Refinery Arts & Spirit Centre in Saskatoon, and was followed by a Gala Reception at the SCC Gallery. View Award Winners
History & Background
Dimensions came into being when Alex Dillabough, Mayor of Battleford, lobbied the Government of Saskatchewan for some promotional assistance linking craft and the tourism industry. Exhibitions were organized by the Saskatchewan Department of Industry and Commerce in 1974 and 1975 in conjunction with the Handcraft Festival. The newly formed Saskatchewan Craft Council (SCC) provided a jury in 1976, and the first Premier’s Prize was awarded in 1977. From those beginnings, until 2009, Dimensions was presented annually. In 2011, it became a biennial exhibition and is still the only open, juried and touring exhibition of craft in the province. Two jurors select the pieces for Dimensions and determine the award winners; one juror from Saskatchewan and one juror from outside the province. A public critique session has always been an integral part of the Dimensions formula: all entrants and interested public can meet with the jurors to discuss the work. An overview of the process and thoughts about the works are followed by questions and comments from the audience. This serves to benefit the larger community, providing an understanding of the jurying process to everyone. A catalogue is also part of the formula: it encourages and rewards excellence in craft, which is the main focus of Dimensions. It is a promotional device for the participants and the SCC. It is also an educational device because it contains descriptions of the participants as well as the processes they utilize. It contains jurors’ statements about influences that have shaped the exhibition, and/or how the pieces address the contemporary scene.