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Lean Timms Craft ACT Auction LR (12 of 50)_feature

Going once, going twice…party! Sell out at DESIGN Canberra

Beatrice Smith

What do you get when you combine a lighting designer straight from the lauded Dark Mofo Festival in Tasmania, a gorgeous heritage building, a DJ and some of Canberra’s finest local brews and spirits?

An auction, obviously. Well, an auction party unlike anything this city has seen. And everyone’s invited!

This Friday 10 November, The Fitters Workshop in Kingston will play host to one of DESIGN Canberra 2017’s most exciting events. SELL OUT blends design, music, food and drink into a party worthy of launching the annual festival, with a special twist.

That twist comes in the form of a online design auction which will see over 25 limited edition and one off pieces by local designers and makers up for grabs, including one very special piece of work—Zoe Brand’s ‘Sell Out’ large disc pendant—being auctioned live on the night.

“I was approached by DESIGN Canberra to help curate the opening launch party and auction and accompanying paraphernalia. I offered up some suggestions for a name of the party and we settled on SELL OUT. I love the ambiguity of it, especially something that can have both positive and negative connotations. Broadly I would say most artists and designers want to have a SELL OUT exhibition, however, I suspect they don’t want to be considered a SELL OUT, one that goes against their better judgment just for money,” says Zoe Brand, artist and jeweller.

“This piece I have made is a one-off, it is the biggest disc pendant I have made to date, it’s powder coated red to emulate sale signs in retail environments. It’s comically huge for a piece of jewellery, but it also had to be big, you either SELL OUT or go home.”

Aside from celebrating small-scale, handmade work by local makers and designers, the party invites guests to think on the origin of their purchases.

“Where mass-produced replicas focus on the most recent trend, handcrafted and one-off pieces are creatively pushing the boundaries of design practice, creating thoughtful, well-made work whose value transcends what’s simply ‘in fashion’,” says Rachael Coghlan CEO Craft ACT and Artistic Director DESIGN Canberra Festival

So what could you be bidding for?

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The HOSHI range from maker/designer Tom Skeehan of Skeehan Studio is limited edition and a minimalist dream. Tom’s pieces up for auction include a chair and two ottomans.

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Also auctioning beautiful pieces for the home is furniture designer Christina Bricknell, whose SWOLL ottomans and beans are fun, textural and bright.

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If you’re a fan of the delicate, look no further than silversmith Alison Jackson’s limited series of hand formed earrings, or Simon Cottrell’s contemporary jewellery.

Lean TImms Craft ACT Auction Simon Cottrell HR6

Both blend traditional techniques with sleek silver, creating unique adornments (or the perfect gift…).

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For those who hold Canberra close to their heart, Dan Lorrimer and Mitchell Brooks’ special edition two-tone Griffin Blueprint Dish is a subtle tribute to our beautiful city, while Geoff Farquhar-Still’s sculpture and prints are eye-catching and mesmerising.

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For the table, Anna Gianakis’ minimalist porcelain vessels are the perfect centrepiece for a dinner party and glass artist Kate Nixon’s cloche and dino vessels are bright, fun twists on traditional vases.

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If you’re after something really unique, Marilou Chagnaud’s sculptural paper works are ‘design pieces’ that will no doubt start conversations and last but certainly not least, Zoe Brand’s ‘Sell Out’ large disc pendant, made especially for the event, would be a great tongue-in-cheek gift for an artist friend or just a great souvenir from a remarkable party.

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You can bid right now for the work of your choice online at

Bids close around 9:30 pm on Friday 10 November (the night of SELL OUT), giving successful bidders the chance to take home their piece of handcrafted creative work on the night.

Not ready to bid? Come for the atmosphere instead – with DJs, great food and drinks and experimental lighting design, it’s sure to be a phenomenal celebration of home-grown design and the 2017 festival program.

the essentials

What: SELL OUT: Festival Opening Party
When: Friday 10 November from 8pm
Where: The Fitters Workshop, 21 Wentworth Avenue, Kingston
Tickets: $10 online, $15 at the door including one wine, beer or soft drink Purchase via TryBooking

Photography: Lean Timms for Craft ACT

This is a sponsored editorial. For more information on sponsored editorials, click here


Beatrice Smith

Bea loves that her job as HerCanberra’s Editorial Coordinator involves eating, drinking and interviewing people - sometimes simultaneously. The master of HerCanberra’s publishing schedule, she’s usually found hunched over a huge calendar muttering to herself about content balance. Otherwise you’ll find her at the movies, ordering a cheese board or ordering a cheese board at the movies. More about the Author

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