For designers

Queensland is home to some of the most active chapters of design sector organisations in Australia. These organisations provide important networking, career development, learning and educational opportunities for designers and students from all disciplines.

They include:

The Design Institute of Australia (DIA) – Queensland branch

The Queensland Branch of the Design Institute of Australia is the voice of professional design in Queensland. DIA (Queensland) actively work with community, government, business, industry and education sectors within industries of manufacturing, product, fashion, built environment, communications and business. The Queensland branch is also highly active in the areas of education and socially responsible design. Education programs in Queensland include TARMAC and GoDesign. TARMAC is a Queensland program specifically tailored to assist emerging designers launch their careers and forge important networks and relationships with Queensland and international design leaders.

Australian Graphic Design Association (AGDA) – Queensland branch

The Australian Graphic Design Association (AGDA) is the peak national organisation for professional graphic designers. It was founded in 1988 to facilitate the advancement of the graphic design profession in Australia.

AGDA’s goal is to establish fair and productive working relationships between graphic designers and their clients. It does this by providing designers with the tools and information to take control of their professional lives. AGDA also works on increasing awareness of the value and importance of graphic design in business, education and culture.

AGDA manages a program of awards, exhibitions, seminars and professional development activities for members. Many of these activities are also available to the wider design and business communities.

Queensland Chapter – Australian Institute of Architects

The Australian Institute of Architects exists to:

  • Advance the interests of members, their professional standards and contemporary practice, and
  • Expand and advocate the value of architects and architecture to the sustainable growth of our community, economy and culture.


The Australian Institute of Architects is a national body consisting of almost 10,000 members across Australia and overseas. The Institute was formed in 1930 when state architectural institutes combined to form a unified national association with the following aims:

  • To advance architecture
  • To maintain the integrity and standing of the profession
  • To promote the profession’s views nationally and internationally, and
  • To encourage the study of architecture


By promoting better, responsible and environmental design, the Institute actively lobbies to maintain and improve the quality of our built environment. Raising design standards in our cities, urban areas, commercial and residential buildings, architects and the Institute have a major role in shaping Australia’s future.


artisan is the peak body in Queensland presenting and promoting unique and individual quality crafted design to an Australian and international audience. artisan’s ethos of sector advocacy, leadership, partnerships and marketing, benefits the sector through the creation of opportunities including:

  • Retail through artisan’s designer store (m)art
  • Seminars and mentoring programs
  • Exhibition development and touring
  • Export, artist referrals
  • Lecturing and critical writing
  • Corporate gifts and corporate commissioning.


Through these initiatives artisan builds markets and develops audiences enabling a self-sustaining and strong creative sector.

KickArts Contemporary Arts

KickArts Contemporary Arts is the leading contemporary visual arts organisation based in Cairns with a strong focus on design. KickArts activities include:

  • Presenting cutting-edge contemporary visual art from Far North Queensland, nationally and from abroad
  • Offering community events including artist talks, community workshops and performances
  • Curating exhibitions that tour Queensland and Australia
  • Providing educational visits and workshops for school and university students within Far North Queensland
  • Developing Djumbunji Press, the KickArts Fine Art Printmaking studio
  • Managing Artist in Residence programs and an artist studio space to provide professional development opportunities for local, national and international artists
  • Providing retail and merchandising opportunities for artists and designers through the KickArts Shop
  • Offering outreach programs to take printmaking skills to remote communities and art centres around northern Queensland