Greater Denton Arts Council


about the exhibition

The Greater Denton Arts Council proudly presents the 33rd annual Materials: Hard + Soft International Contemporary Craft Competition and Exhibition. Recognized as one of the premier craft exhibitions in the country, Materials: Hard + Soft began in 1987 and was originally initiated by area artist Georgia Leach Gough. The exhibition celebrates the evolving field of contemporary craft and the remarkable creativity and innovation of artists who push the boundaries of their chosen media. Since 2017, the exhibition has expanded to include works by international artists.


Beth C. McLaughlin is Chief Curator of Exhibitions and Collections at Fuller Craft Museum in Brockton, Massachusetts. Ms. McLaughlin has held leadership and curatorial roles in the arts and museum fields for over 25 years at institutions across the U.S., including Fuller Craft Museum, Oakland Museum of California, and DeCordova Sculpture Park and Museum. She has curated over 45 exhibitions and has served as a juror/adjudicator for a number of cultural organizations, including American Craft Council, Fiber Art Now Excellence in Fibers, Massachusetts Cultural Council, Cherry Creek Arts Festival, Providence Holiday Art Sale, and the City of Worcester. Ms. McLaughlin has been published in several books and periodicals, such as Crafting Dissent: Handicraft as Protest from the American Revolution to the Pussyhats, Fiber Art Now, the Decorative Arts Society Newsletter, and American Craft Magazine. Ms. McLaughlin is passionate about expanding awareness of the craft field, promoting the makers, and exploring the transformative powers of handmade objects.

Beth, C. McLaughlin, 2020 Juror

Beth, C. McLaughlin, 2020 Juror



Our entry deadline for the 2020 exhibition is September 29, 2019. Please review the upcoming schedule below for more information on the next steps in the competition.  A downloadable 2020 Prospectus is available for entry guidelines and procedures questions. Entries can be submitted online or through the mail. 

The Greater Denton Arts Council will provide Juror Awards in the amounts of $1,000, $750, $500 and $250. Winners will be determined by the juror and will be announced at the opening reception of the exhibition on February 7, 2020.

Works produced in any of the craft media: clay, fiber, glass, metal, paper, wood, or any combination of craft media, are acceptable. Entries must be the complete work of the submitting artist. Works can be a collaboration piece, all collaborators must be listed in the space provided on the entry form. Local, national, and international artists are encouraged to apply. Kits or commercially designed works will not be accepted. All work must have been completed within the past two years (2017-2019) and not previously exhibited at the Patterson-Appleton Arts Center.

Each artist is limited to three (3) entries. There is a $40 (USD) non-refundable fee, for up to three (3) entries. Payments must be submitted online at the time of application.

All work must be ready for installation. Submissions are restricted to a weight limit of no more than 75 pounds. GDAC reserves the right to exclude any entry that presents complex installation or assembly problems.

A 30% commission will be retained from all work sold during the exhibition. Works which are not for sale must be clearly marked as such (NFS).

The exhibition will be publicized regionally, nationally and internationally. GDAC reserves the right to use photographs or digital images of any accepted work for the purpose of publicity.

Artists are responsible for pre-paying all shipping charges to and from the exhibition site upon selection by the juror. Accepted works must be hand-delivered or shipped according to the instructions provided in the Artist Contract. Entries will be insured by GDAC while in its custody. Insurance value for pieces NFS should reflect fair market value. No work may be withdrawn before the close of the exhibition. Sending an entry to this exhibition shall imply an agreement on the part of the sender to all conditions above.


September 29, 2019 | Deadline for acceptance of online entry materials (by 11:59 PM)

November 15, 2019| Notification forms sent to all artists

December 6, 2019 | Artist contracts are due

January 5 - 11, 2020 | Shipped and hand-delivered artwork due at the Arts Center

February 7, 2020 | Opening Reception 6:00 - 8:00 PM. Award Ceremony 7:00 PM.

February 7 - May 9, 2020 | Exhibition on view at the Patterson-Appleton Arts Center

May 11 - 23, 2020 | De-installation and return of artwork

For additional questions about the competition and exhibition, contact 

past materials: Hard + soft exhibitions

View the 2018 Materials Hard + Soft exhibit catalog

View the 2018 Materials Hard + Soft exhibit catalog

View the 2017 Materials: Hard + Soft exhibit catalog

View the 2017 Materials: Hard + Soft exhibit catalog

View the 2016 Materials: Hard + Soft exhibit catalog

View the 2016 Materials: Hard + Soft exhibit catalog

View the works featured in the 2015 exhibition

View the works featured in the 2015 exhibition

2019 juror

JANET L. MCCALL has been Executive Director of Contemporary Craft (CC) in Pittsburgh since 1995. Founded in 1971, the organization includes a gallery featuring work by national and international artists, hands-on workshop studios, a retail store, and a downtown satellite gallery, and reaches approximately 145,000 visitors annually. McCall has curated or served as a juror for numerous craft exhibitions and has a passion for building community through art through social justice themed exhibitions at Contemporary Craft such as Enough Violence: Artists Speak Out, and Mindful: Exploring Mental Health Through Art, and Shelter: Crafting a Safe Home.

McCall received her BA in English and Art History from Bowling Green State University, and her MA in Art History from the University of Pittsburgh. She has served as an adjunct faculty member for both the University of Pittsburgh’s History of Art & Architecture Department and the Master of Arts Management Program at Carnegie Mellon University’s Heinz School. In her free time, McCall enjoys making books and keeping illustrated dream journals, and now has 45 chronological volumes completed over more than two decades.

2017 juror award winners

This project is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts, Texas Commission on the Arts and the City of Denton