Be a Master


Be Recognized as a Master Artisan


Master Artisan status in the Pennsylvania Guild of Craftsmen denotes members whose work, after rigorous hands-on review by a jury of experts, has been deemed to be of the highest quality as described by our Three Benchmarks:


Excellence in Craftsmanship


Resolved Design


Unique Voice (contemporary craft) or Faithful Reproduction (traditional craft)


Members who achieve Master Artisan status unlock a host of additional benefits within the organization which are outlined further down on this page.


Is it time for you to strive to be your best? Are you ready to attain Master Artisan status?



Guild Master Artisan Procedures


Members may apply, via the link below, to be scheduled for a Master Artisan Jury Session. The online application requires 4 to 6 digital images representative of the work that will be brought for hands-on review and a statement outlining the applicant’s craft background, education, specialized techniques and studio setup (i.e. independent studio, partnership, or a production studio with assistants or employees).

Jury sessions are limited to 14 applicants per day to allow for thorough review by a select jury of Master Artisans; Application Juried Status - Pennsylvania Guild of Craftsmen - Standardsapplications are reviewed by the Standards Committee and scheduling is done based on the date of receipt of the application, the completeness of the application, and review of the information received. Applicants will be notified of their scheduled Master Artisan Jury Session date and time as soon as possible.

The non-refundable application fee is $55. In the event an applicant is not approved for Master Artisan status he or she may reapply, with new images, at the reduced rate of $25.  Re-application must be done with new images and information but the fee is reduced to $25.

Next Master Session: April 12, 2017, from 10 am – 2 pm. at the Pennsylvania Guild of Craftsmen, 335 N. Queen St. Lancaster.

Scheduling: Deadline to apply: March 15, 2017; Application Assessment and Notifications to applicants, March 22nd.


2017 Master Artisan Application



On the day of the jury session for  which the applicants have been scheduled, each candidate will bring 4 to 6 works that exemplify the Three Benchmarks:Visual Review - Juried Status - Pennsylvania Guild of Craftsmen - Standards committee

Excellence in Craftsmanship

Resolved Design

Unique Voice (contemporary craft) or Faithful Reproduction (traditional craft)


After arranging their works for review, each applicant will have three minutes to talk with two or three jurors about his or her work, concentrating on a choice of materials and techniques and the skills he or she employs.

After the verbal presentations, the applicants will leave the jury area.


After the applicants leave the area, the Master Artisan jurors examine and review each applicant’s work to determine whether it successfully meets the Three Benchmarks. The jurors who listened to the applicant’s verbal presentation will lead the discussion for each individual person’s work.   Artist statements and additional details outlined in the applicant’s application are also considered at this time.Visual Review - Pennsylvania Guild of Craftsmen - Standards

Decisions are made by the jury based on all the information presented the day of the jury session and on the Master Artisan application and accompanying documents.

After decisions have been rendered, the applicants are welcomed back to the jury room, in small groups, each applicant to be met by a juror or jurors who will speak with them, individually about the decision.

Successful candidates will receive a temporary certificate and 20 PGC seals. A hand-lettered certificate will be mailed to the new Master Artisans within 4 weeks.

Unsuccessful applicants will be given the opportunity to receive constructive feedback, if they so desire. A primary goal of the jury is to provide useful information about the artisans’ work, as the Master Artisan jury process is always about raising the level of our work.


One presentation is included in the cost of the application. For members who return for a second presentation, the re-jury fee is $25.


Benefits of Master Artisan Status


Recognition and acknowledgment that the artisan has achieved a level of exceptional ability and has produced work of true excellence.


Special consideration for participation in PGC exhibitions.


Eligibility to win awards presented at PGC Fine Craft Fairs.


Priority image use on PGC marketing and advertising materials.


Show selection scoring bonus for PGC Fine Craft Fairs.


Standards Committee

The Standards Committee is comprised of Master Artisan members in good standing of the PGC, who together represent a broad knowledge of fine craft disciplines. The mission of the Standards Committee is to communicate the nature and importance of the Three Benchmarks. The Master Artisan Program is just one important way we accomplish our goal.