Contemporary Applied Arts, often called CAA, was established in 1948 to support and encourage the making of fine crafts in Britain – and to keep them firmly in the public eye.
We are a membership organisation and support our members in various ways. This includes a programme of innovative and thoughtfully curated exhibitions, retail activities and a bespoke commissioning service.
CAA currently represents around 350 designer makers, spanning the entire spectrum of the applied arts. Our Southwark gallery shows a diverse and frequently-changing selection of one-off work, ranging from decorative to functional pieces and including ceramics, glass, furniture, jewellery, metalwork, textiles, wood and paper.
Paramount to everything we do is the act of making. Our members often use ancient, traditional skills, many of which are in danger of being lost forever. With experience and creative vision, these skills are interpreted by the makers and expressed in their own unique voice and in contemporary idiom. The results are often both stunning and thought-provoking.
All of our highly-skilled makers are based in the UK and have been selected for membership by a panel of their peers. To become a CAA member, makers must demonstrate excellent knowledge of their material and exceptional skill in making. They must also produce work of the highest quality, show originality and have a strong identity and personal voice.
CAA acts as a vocal advocate for the crafts in Britain generally. We offer to the public examples of the richness of craft in Britain today, highlighting the huge, often unnoticed role which the applied arts have played over centuries – and continue to play – in both our domestic lives and in the wider, built environment.
Our patron is His Royal Highness Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.
Registered Charity No. 235914