Australian Design Centre is a highly agile and adaptable organisation that has taken a leadership role in the contemporary craft and design sector since it first opened in 1964. ADC continues to act as a bridge between different communities in design, constantly evolving to keep at the leading edge of innovation, and provides the interface between the design world and our audiences.

ADC has always maintained strong connections to designers, makers and craftspeople representing and showcasing their work through exhibitions, public programs, learning resources, tours, digital content production, publications and retail activities.

Below is a collection of stories that explore some of the histories of ADC with spotlights on collaborations and touring, design criticality, global, Indigenous, innovation and technology, emerging and established, which is further accompanied by a chronological timeline of our 60+ year history.

Image: Obsessed: Compelled to make artist Kath Inglis in her Adelaide studio, 2018. Photo: Angus Lee Forbes

Collaboration & Touring

Collaboration and touring have been an integral part of the Australian Design Centre’s programs throughout its 60+ year history.

Promoting a Criticality of Design

ADC is committed to ongoing conversations and debates about the importance of design and its varied applications in our lives.

Global Contexts

By placing the work of Australian practitioners in the context of global design trends and promoting international design practice here, ADC sees design as a global conversation.

First Nations Craft and Design

ADC has regularly and consistently highlighted the work of Indigenous artists and designers, recognising the importance of the oldest continuing living culture in the world.

Technology & Innovation

ADC is committed to uncovering future possibilities for design – across all disciplines and exhibition platforms – and the role that technology plays in that future.

From Emerging to Established

For over a decade, ADC has consistently spotlighted and supported Australian designers and makers at two key stages of their career – at the very beginning and after three decades of established practice.

Handmade Sydney

ADC has always supported the handmade and craft sector, but this focus has strengthened in recent years with ADC’s new festival Sydney Craft Week, ADC’s Makers Markets and Object Shop.

ADC Timeline

This timeline covers events, exhibitions and significant moments in the life of ADC from 1964 to today.