April 4, 2019

Call for Applications: Critical Decor

Written by

Critical Decor

The Shumka Centre of Creative Entrepreneurship, in partnership with AZ Home, invites designers and artists of all disciplines to be involved in a new opportunity to create new work situated within the home decor space.

Critical Decor will engage three Emily Carr University designers/artists to investigate the notion of home decor through the development, manufacture, and retailing of small space consumer products.

Facilitated by MDES Candidate Seth Parker as part of his research, students will work collaboratively with the team of AZ Home and fellow participants to develop a cohesive series of home decor products. Upon completion of the product design, the objects will move into product development and will be pitched for sale across Canada. Products will go to market through 2020-2021.

Product Scope

The series of products will be focused on providing solutions for small spaces. Examples of the target audience may include renters with limited ability to impact their living spaces (drilling, wall mounting, etc) and residents of micro-units who need multi-functional product solutions.

Primary materials for these products are to be wood and/or metal. Production methods could include:

  • Milling/CNC
  • Water jet
  • Laser cutting
  • Hand tooling


Phase 1

May 9, 2019

Submission deadline

May 13-21, 2019

Shortlisted artists interviewed

May 23, 2019

Selected artists notified
Phase 2

May 30 – July 25, 2019

Concept review, technical and design development
Project research and development
Rapid prototyping
Mockups and Production Files
Phase 3

August 1 – October 3, 2019

Production sample reviews
Packaging + Brand iterations

Students should be available to meet every Thursday from 10am-1pm until the completion of the project and are expected to put in a total of 6hrs/week into the project. We will work with students to develop Fall project timelines around Fall 2019 school schedules.


This opportunity is suitable for artists/designers who:

  • Are enrolled at Emily Carr University of Art + Design (3rd or 4th year undergraduate student) with a GPA of 3.0 or higher
  • Are available to meet the project timeline (see below)

Each participant will receive an Artist Fee of $2,400 and a materials budget toward developing prototypes. Additionally, participants will be credited as product creators and will receive royalties on product sales. Eligible students may also apply for co-op credit for this project.

Submission requirements

To apply, please prepare the following:

  1. A brief letter of interest :
  • What attracts you to this opportunity
  • Your approach or interest in working within the home decor and consumer context
  • Your relevant experience and approach to past projects, and how this opportunity relates to your practice
  1. Up to ten images (JPG or PDF)
  • Image requirements: JPG or PDF up to 2 MB per file
  • Title your images and videos with your name and a number.
  • A list that corresponds with the numbered images or videos you submit
  • Include your name, title of the work, date, media, dimensions, location (if public) and a short description (if applicable).
  • Or, include the above information in the form of a link
  1. A CV of up to three pages. For collaborations please submit a joint CV or up to 2 pages per person.
  2. One reference who can speak to your experience with comparable projects.

Selection process

Submissions will be evaluated by the team of AZ Home and the Shumka Centre based on letters of interest and past work, and in relation to the following criteria:

  • Approach to the critical context and opportunities
  • Availability and ability to meet deadlines
  • Artistic quality of past work

How to Submit

Please email all proposal materials to Seth Parker at sparker@azhome.com

Deadline: Thursday, May 9, 5:00 pm

About AZ Home:

AZ Home is a 40-year-old company based in Richmond, BC, with functional networks of production, manufacturing, shipping, and selling that offers a range of approximately 500 products servicing retailers all over Canada.



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