Burnt Dirt is a collective of ceramic artists who are passionate about expanding the boundaries of ceramic and object art. The group was born out of a desire to foster creative exploration of ceramic art by generating new opportunities for artists to expand their practice into the ceramic medium. 

The Burnt Dirt residency program aims to invigorate exploration and development of object and ceramic art in Australia. This new, innovative program offers emerging and established artists the opportunity to expand their practice in a unique, supportive and innovative environment. 

Residencies run for 4-week periods and are situated in a collaborative, open-studio setting in the heart of Wollongong. Artists are invited to both expand their own personal practice and contribute to the development of new object art collections with the Burnt Dirt team.

The Burnt Dirt residency program is a self-directed residency for artists needing time away to focus on new projects, techniques, and practices. While the residency encourages the development of new bodies of work, there is no requirement to present new works at the end of the residency (although it is warmly welcomed!) 

As the residency seeks to foster the exploration and development of object and ceramic art, part of the residency involves resident artists collaborating with Burnt Dirt on the development of new object art products (detailed below).

There is no formal instruction throughout the residency, however in-house technical support is available for those new to the medium of ceramic and object art.

It is encouraged that resident artist’s find creative ways to engage the local community in their work during the residency, such as participating in an artist talk, offering a masterclass or generating public displays. However this is not a requirement.

The Burnt Dirt team are obsessed with objects. Fun objects, playful objects, cheeky objects, the kind of contraband objects your high school teacher might confiscate. 

Our team are eager to experiment and collaborate with our resident artists on a range of new, never to be repeated, one of a kind objects for our online store. 

As part of the residency, artists will be provided blank objects to add their creative touch too. In addition to the materials provided for your own personal project (listed below), the residency will cover all materials required for the development and production of these unique objects. 

At the end of the residency, Burnt Dirt will do a collection drop of the objects made by our resident artists. These objects will be available for purchase through the Burnt Dirt online store, with 50% of profits going to resident artists, and the other 50% back into the residency program. 

This portion of the residency not only offers resident artists a unique collaborative experience with the Burnt Dirt team, but also contributes to the ongoing funding and sustainability of the residency program. 

Resident artists are provided the following during their residency:

  • $150 worth of clay 
  • Unlimited access to glazes
  • $500 worth of firing 
  • 24hr Clay Wollongong studio access
  • Full access to studio equipment
  • Friendly communal working space
  • On-site, technical ceramic support
  • Local self-catering accommodation 

These materials are offered to support artist’s to create new works. Any additional materials are at the artists’ expense. 

Clay Wollongong opened in July 2022 and is a community ceramic art studio located in the heart of Wollongong CBD. The studio offers a wide-range of ceramic classes & courses from hand building to wheel-throwing for all skill-levels and all-ages as well as studio access for practicing artists.

The studio is a vibrant, welcoming and creative hub full of first timers and experienced potters either taking a class, course or developing their practice and creating new ceramic work.

You can learn more about Clay Wollongong here: www.claywollongong.com

Everything! Our Clay Wollongong studio is well equipped with a wide range of resources. You’ll have 24hr access to:

  • 19 Wheels,
  • 5 Kilns
  • Slab roller
  • Extruder
  • Ceramic supply store for all your clay needs
  • On-site technicians
  • Cleaning
  • Air Conditioning
  • Over 18 in-studio glazes, plus glaze area
  • Plaster area
  • Tools, molds and equipment

Yes! Resident artists will have access to a room in a beautiful, fully furnished 2-bedroom home in Coniston. The house is a 20 minute walk and 5 minute ride from the Clay Wollongong studio and includes:

  • Comfortable queen-size bed
  • Washing machine
  • Fully equipped kitchen
  • Bathroom and shower
  • Free street parking
  • Basic bedding and linens
  • Wifi access

Unfortunately we are unable to accomodate family members or pets due to space and accomodation restrictions.

However if you're a single parent chat to us to see if we might be able to accomodate you.

Yes. The Burnt Dirt residency fee is $400 for the 4-week period. The residency fee includes artist accommodation, 24hr studio access, some materials and firing costs (detailed above). 

Successful applicants are responsible for all other costs, including food, transport, travel costs, and materials outside of those provided. Unfortunately we do not offer a stipend or living allowances. 

Artists can choose to sell completed works through the Burnt Dirt online store, but are not obligated too. Works sold through the store are subject to a 30% commission. 

Unfortunately we do not, but we recommend looking into grants to assist with covering the fee if needed, such as Creative NSW’s small project grants (quick response) here.

We welcome applications from local and Australia-wide artists of all skills levels, including emerging and established artists. 

As the residency has a ceramic / object focus, it is expected that applicants have either experience or a clear interest in working with this medium.

A preview of our application form can be found here.

Applications open on Friday 1st of December 2023 and close at 5pm AEDT on Friday 15th of December 2023. 

To apply, please complete the application form here.

Clay Wollongong invites applications for their Burnt Dirt: Artist in Residence Program from both emerging and established artists, working across a range of mediums, Australia wide. Resident artists are selected using the following criteria:

  • Artistic merit/quality of the artist’s work to date;
  • Clear approach to how residency time will be used;
  • Benefit of the residency to the artist’s professional development;
  • Suitability of the creative practice to the studio;
  • Innovative approach to collaboration;
  • Strategies to connect to the community.

If successful, applicants must have or obtain Public Liability Insurance prior to commencement of the residency. Successful applicants will also be required to enter into an agreement (MOU) with Clay Wollongong.

That’s okay! Reach out to the Burnt Dirt team and we’ll do our best to answer further questions you have about the program.