The retail gallery jury process is currently closed for the summer. Please connect with us in September 2023 to begin a new application.
Shop Maine Craft Gallery Jury Process
Presenting and promoting members of the Maine Crafts Association, Shop Maine Craft galleries, markets & craft shows provide opportunities for the public to connect with artists, learn about Maine craft history, and purchase fine handmade goods. Located in West Gardiner and Portland, Shop Maine Craft Retail Galleries sell and exhibit the work of over 400 MCA members. The galleries showcase Maine’s legacy of creativity and craftsmanship through a broad spectrum of media, technique, and creative design. They also act as community resources for State and cultural tourism, connectivity to our membership, and access to our broad range of programming offered by Shop Maine Craft and Maine Crafts Association.
Please note that gallery management must be dedicated to the operation of retail spaces and will not conduct juries from June-August or November-December.
Fine Craft Jury
Our galleries represent a broad spectrum of media, technique, and creative design. Work in the following categories of contemporary fine craft qualify for the retail gallery fine craft jury:
Baskets, Ceramics, Fiber, Furniture, Glass, Jewelry, Leather, Metal, Mixed Media, Paper, Stone, and Wood
The retail gallery jury process is open to all craftspeople, including Maine Crafts Association members and non-members, who live and work at least seasonally in Maine. All qualifying work must be made by hand, well conceived, and expertly executed in Maine with the use of appropriate equipment and tools.
How to apply: To be considered for representation at the Center for Maine Craft or Maine Craft Portland, please complete the Self Assessment Tool and review the jury information below. When you are ready, please contact the galleries with information about your business, links to your website and social media, and/or images of your work. If the work qualifies for the jury and is a good fit our staff will provide an online application form, charge a jury fee, and schedule an appointment to meet you and review your submissions in-person.
For makers of Books, Calendars, Candles, Prints, Photography, Cards, Personal Care, Food Products, and Pet Products, there is a separate jury. Please jump to the Complementary Jury section for application information.
- Non-Members $15
- MCA Basic Members $10
- Individuals within MCA Institutional memberships $10
Jurors will consist of two of the following: A Shop Maine Craft retail gallery manager, director, board member, or an MCA artist-member. Jurors will review work and approve it for possible future orders according to gallery needs for seasonal sales, price levels, and media/type of work. Work representing a different medium presented by the same artist needs to go through its own jury process. For example, if an artist has ceramic work approved for sale but wants to also sell new glass work, the artist would need to re-jury for glass.
A 70% difference in inventory must be maintained between the Shop Maine Craft (SMC) galleries, meaning you will likely only be represented in one store if you are accepted. Your jury submission will be considered first for the gallery in which you prefer to be represented, however, gallery management may rotate or transfer work at their discretion; this decision is based on sales income and space limitations within each store.
The full details of the gallery inventory policies can be found in the SMC Consignment Agreement.
Submissions will be evaluated based on:
- Execution of design
- Technique and craftsmanship
- Price point
- Creative use of materials
- Aesthetic qualities
You will be scheduled for a 15 minute jury appointment in one of the galleries. In this time segment jurors will ask a set of questions and discuss aspects of the submission with you.
Applicants will receive a jury response with one of two answers via email from Shop Maine Craft within 30 days of their jury date:
Approved (POOL): All approved applicants will be added to the gallery ordering pool, our database of approved work from which to select new vendors.
Shop Maine Craft will be ordering new products regularly from the approved Pool, however, orders are not guaranteed within any set time frame. Ordering factors depend upon customer demand, season, similarity to current products at the galleries, price points, vendor rotation, and other factors related to retail commerce. It is recommended that applicants stay in communication with Shop staff if work changes or a new product is being produced.
Not Approved (NO): The work is not considered to be an appropriate fit for gallery inventory.
If an applicant’s work is not approved, the jurors may provide feedback on further development prior to reapplying to the jury. Possible scenarios may include the jury’s recommendation to refine craft techniques, more market research may need to be conducted for a particular product, pricing structure may need development, or the work may not be a good fit overall for historic sales trends in the galleries.
- Applicants must be current seasonal (6 month minimum) or year-round residents of Maine.
- Applicants must be professional, capable of producing work of consistent quality, and responsible for fulfilling orders obtained from Shop Maine Craft.
- All work represented in the galleries must be original and created by the artist or under the artist’s direct supervision. Applicants must submit only their own work, not that made by others. All work must be original and handmade in Maine or with the use of appropriate equipment and tools. Seconds, irregulars, and damaged goods are not acceptable.
- After receiving an order, all gallery vendors will be required to maintain a Maine Crafts Association membership. MCA membership must be renewed annually by December 31st. Required levels are Professional or Basic, as directed by Shop Maine Craft.
- Applicants must abide by the general terms and conditions of the Maine Crafts Association and Shop Maine Craft as stated in the Retail Gallery Jury Process Information and Consignment Agreement.
Complementary Jury: Stationery, Books, and Food Products
Known as the Complementary Jury, the following products are reviewed on a rolling basis at the Center for Maine Craft + Maine Craft Portland:
Books, Calendars, Candles, Prints, Photography, Cards, Personal Care, Food Products, and Pet Products.
To have your product considered please submit samples, Complementary Jury Form and $15 jury fee to the Center for Maine Craft or Maine Craft Portland.
Submissions may be mailed or delivered to either gallery for consideration:
Center for Maine Craft
Mailings: PO Box 173 Gardiner ME 04345
Driving Directions: 288 Lewiston Rd West Gardiner, ME 04345
Deliveries (FedEx + UPS only): 24 Service Plaza Drive West Gardiner ME 04345
Maine Craft Portland
521 Congress St Portland, ME 04101
The Maine Crafts Association believes strongly in the services offered to its members. In addition to benefiting from sales venues through Shop Maine Craft galleries + events, MCA also offers educational, marketing, networking, and support services to craft artists. We strongly urge all MCA members to take advantage of these important benefits.
For more information about membership levels and benefits, visit mainecrafts.org