2023 Arts Conference and Summit Planner

Whether you're a curator, a visual artist, theatre performer, writer or festival director, conferences are returning in 2023, offering professional development opportunities.
Business woman lecturing at Conference.

Whether you’re looking for professional development, seeking to tap into sector trends or hoping to rub shoulders with cultural entrepreneurs (remember what that was like?), ArtsHub’s 2023 Conference and Summit Planner maps out what’s on offer.

Note from editors: We’ve tried to be thorough, but additional dates are sure to be announced later in the year, so bookmark this story and check in with us again.

Jump to JUNE CONFERENCES in second half of the year.


CONFERENCE: Ausglass (Vic)
With the theme ‘Future Past’, Ausglass conference – the peak organisation for the art glass profession – will be held in Melbourne, and will explore skill, sustainability, education and technology, with sessions and demos on offer. International speakers include Simone Fezer (Germany).
Dates: 3-5 February, in person, presented at Australian Catholic University in Melbourne (Fitzroy).

SUMMIT: Museums, Health and Wellbeing Summit (online)
From improving mental health to combating social isolation, and building resilience in children to serving those suffering from age-related conditions, this virtual event shares what’s next for health, well-being and museums.
Details: 6-7 February, online.

SUMMIT: Dhaka Art Summit (DAS) (Bangladesh)
The Dhaka Art Summit (DAS) is an international, non-commercial research and exhibition platform for art and architecture related to South Asia. It has a core focus on re-examining how we think about these forms of art in both a regional and an international context. With the theme Bonna, meaning flood, the word extends beyond a singular connotation of ‘disaster’ to challenge binaries – between necessity and excess, between regeneration and disaster, between adult and child, between male and female. Australian curator Alexie Glass-Kantor has been part of the Summit development team.
Details: 3-11 February, in person, presented at Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy.


CONFERENCE: Sydney WorldPride Human Rights Conference (NSW)
A three-day exploration of LGBTQIA+ human rights across three levels of Sydney’s International Convention Centre (ICC), including inspiring keynotes, panels and roundtables with interactive workshops, performances and facilitated networking events. This will be the largest convergence of human rights defenders, community members, government and political representatives, philanthropists and corporate leaders committed to LGBTQIA+ rights ever held in Asia Pacific.
Details: 1-3 March, presented at Sydney’s International Convention Centre (ICC).

CONFERENCE: Regional Public Galleries NSW 2023 Conference (NSW)
With the title, Transformative Conversations: Empowered Actions – From art world peripheries to centres for the future, the conference will bring together gallery staff, creative practitioners and industry professionals to explore the role of galleries as dynamic, sustainable and transformative spaces, as we tackle future challenges and continue to evolve as creative centres for our regions. The jam-packed program includes keynotes, panel discussions, a visit to the stunning Tathra headland for a talk by Aboriginal heritage specialists and a conference dinner at Navigate Arts Church.
Details: 2-3 March, in person, presented at South East Centre for Contemporary Art, formerly Bega Valley Regional Gallery, Bega NSW.

CONFERENCE: Perth Sculpture Conference (WA)
The Perth Sculpture Conference is presented in partnership with Storm King Art Center, US – one of the great sculpture parks in the world – with Artistic Director and Chief Curator Nora R Lawrence and President John P Stern attending. The event coincides with Sculpture by the Sea Cottesloe.
Details: 8-9 March, in person, location to be announced.

TALKS/SUMMIT: All About Women (NSW)
There will be 25 events featuring more than 60 international and Australian artists, thinkers and storytellers at the 11th All About Women festival. Its centrepiece talks will be about gender, justice and equality. Expanding to a three-day program for the first time, the vibrant annual festival will feature lively in-person and online conversations and events. To view the full program and book.
Details: 11-13 March, presented from Sydney Opera House (NSW), in person and online.

WRITERS WEEK: Adelaide Writers’ Week 2023 (SA)
An inspiring program, curated by Louise Adler AM as part of Adelaide Festival, will draw international and Australia contemporary writers together to discuss current topics, under the theme Truth be Told.
Details: 4-9 March, presented at Pioneer Women’s Memorial Garden.

CONFERENCE: Australian International Documentary Conference (Vic)
The southern hemisphere’s premier industry forum and marketplace for documentary and factual content – the Australian International Documentary Conference (AIDC) will take place in-person at ACMI, followed by an online international marketplace. Among the headlining speakers are US documentary filmmaker Sara Dosa, Delhi-based filmmaker and writer Shaunak Sen, Fatima Salaria, Managing Director of UK Production Company Naked Television and Emmy Award-winning Moroccan-American filmmaker Rita Baghdadi, among others. The theme is Agents for Change.
Details: 5-8 March Conference (in person) at ACMI, Melbourne (Vic), and 9-11 March Marketplace (online).

CONFERENCE: Design Research 2023 (Vic)
A three-day conference dedicated to design research and researchers, this year’s event will seek to explore the breadth of design research practices that contribute to these challenges at every level, from initial assessment to planning and conducting, and analysis and use. Design Research 2023 is divided into one day of workshops followed by two full days of conference presentations.
Details: 14-16 March, in person and online, presented at ACMI Melbourne.

SUMMIT: Green Museums Summit (virtual)
Presented by the international organisation MuseumNext, the Green Museums Summit will bring together museum professionals from around the globe to share inspiration, actionable ideas and new ways of working. It will ask: How can museums champion sustainable choices and educate the public about environmental impact? How can we make our museums more sustainable and embrace practices that reduce waste and move us towards net-zero?
Details: 27-28 March, presented online.

CONFERENCE: ArtsRaise Conference 2023 (Vic)
A new addition to the arts conference offering, ArtsRaise is an arts and culture fundraising conference presented by Fundraising and Philanthropy (F&P). It will gather arts fundraising professionals, sponsors, philanthropists and foundations over two days in Melbourne to discuss fundraising best practices, inspirational case studies, emerging methods, and thought leadership from Australia’s leading arts and cultural organisations and practitioners.
Details: 28-29 March, in person, presented in Melbourne.


SYMPOSIUM: The NAS Drawing Symposium (NSW)
The NAS Festival of Drawing held in conjunction with the Dobell Drawing Prize #23 includes the NAS Drawing Symposium, featuring Australian and international artists and speakers, a series of tours and panel discussions. It is returning for its third edition in 2023. NAS Head of Drawing Maryanne Coutts tells ArtsHub: ‘This year for the Drawing Symposium, we are focusing on the importance of those conversations artists have with other artists that last over years, and across distances. We are inviting four artists to each invite another artist who they often talk with about their practices – one of the panels will be Hiraku Suzuki in Japan talking with Gary Warner in Sydney.’
Details: 1 April, in person, presented at the National Art School campus.  

CONVENTION: Australian Partner Acrobatics Convention (Vic)
Tickets for the four-day annual training convention have been released, with workshops on acro-yoga, cheer stunting, circus, sports acrobatics and dance acrobatics for all skill levels. The festival will be held at Camp Cooriemungle, around three hours south-west of Melbourne in Victoria. Registrations open.
Details: 18-23 April, in person, presented at Camp Cooriemungle, Victoria.


MARKETPLACE: Showcase Victoria 2023 (Vic)
Attended each year by over 250 industry members, Showcase Victoria is an arts market with extraordinary outcomes. Showcase Victoria will return to a two-day format this year. Expressions of Interest (EOIs) for artists and producers are now open and will close on 6 February. Presented by the Victorian Association of Performing Arts Centres (VAPAC) and Regional Arts Victoria with support from Creative Victoria, Showcase Victoria is Australia’s leading state-based performing arts market playing a key role in facilitating touring.
Details: 9-10 May, presented at The Drum Theatre, Walker Street and Lonsdale Street, Dandenong.

CONFERENCE: AMaGA National Conference (NSW)
Each year AMaGA (Australian Museums and Galleries Association) holds a National Conference at a different capital city or regional location, aimed at being a networking opportunity for museum and gallery workers. The AMaGA 2023 theme is Discomfort, encouraging brave conversations and new connections in a changing environment. Registrations open.
Details: 16-19 May, in person, presented at Murrook Cultural Centre, Newcastle City Hall and Civic Theatre on Awabakal and Worimi Land/Newcastle. 

SUMMIT: Digital Museum Summit (virtual)
The ever-changing nature of digital can mean that it’s hard for museums to know where to focus their energy for the best results. The MuseumNext Digital Summit brings together more than 40 international speakers to share action orientated presentations to help museums find digital success. They will discuss how museums can stay up-to-date with the latest technology, strategies and tools, with case studies.
Details: 15-16 May, online.

Read: Arts festivals and events calendar 2023

ONLINE CONFERENCE: ALIA Information Online 2023 (virtual)
The ALIA (Australian Library and Information Association) national conference provides the platform as a meeting point for all library and information professionals, from all sectors across Australia and the international community. The conference this year is a virtual event. The theme is Shaping the Future.
Details: 17-18 May, online.

TALKS: Vivid Ideas 2023 (NSW)
Vivid Sydney is a festival of Ideas, Light and Music presented by Destination NSW in partnership with the City of Sydney across key venues. It is the largest festival of its kind in the southern hemisphere. Alongside the spectacular site-responsive light works, a three-week program of panel talks, masterclasses and keynote speakers is presented, which has garnered its own reputation for innovative thinking. Details of the 2023 program are yet to be announced.
Details: 26 May – 17 June, in person, presented across multiple Sydney venues.

TALKS: Semi Permanent 2023 (NSW)
Semi Permanent presents an annual line-up of talks and events canvassing design, art, technology, fashion, music, film, video games, architecture and more. It is presented each year in May at its venue partner, Carriageworks.
Details: to be announced.

Feel engaged with your sector at a conference or talks festival in 2023. Image: Shutterstock.


CONFERENCE: APAM Gathering (virtual and in person)
The next Australian Performing Arts Market (APAM) Gathering will be in June alongside RISING in Naarm/Melbourne. The Gathering is a unique opportunity to see new Australian and New Zealand contemporary performance (as pitches and full-length productions), participate in formal and informal networking, engage in Exchange (the talks and ideas program) and make new national and international connections. Performing artists, producers, presenters and curators are invited to join colleagues and friends from across the country and around the globe, for the opportunity to engage in a curated in person and digital program of performance, networking and dialogue. Tickets for the Gathering go on sale on 14 April 2023.
Details: digital Gathering: 7-9 June, in person Gathering: 14-18 June.

REMIX Sydney is a global conference that has roots in Australia, and explores the intersection of art, technology and entrepreneurship.
Details: 8-9 June.

SYMPOSIUM: Access All Areas (SA)
A symposium championing d/Deaf and disabled equality in arts and culture will share new and underrepresented perspectives and voices in Adelaide this June. The two-day event Access All Areas, to take place at the Art Gallery of South Australia (AGSA), will cover how to plan and implement programs for d/Deaf and disabled audiences, consider access across all aspect of operations – from programming to people and culture – as well as highlighting successful models for collaborating with d/Deaf and disabled artists, advocating for improved access within the sector and building networks across Adelaide’s extensive arts and disability sector.
Details: 8-9 June, in person at Art Gallery of South Australia and online.

CONFERENCE: 2023 BookPeople (SA)
BookPeople (formerly Australian Booksellers Association) has announced that the 99th annual conference and trade exhibition will take place in June. The 2023 conference will begin on Saturday afternoon with a unique Adelaide experience, then will officially kick off on Sunday morning with a packed program of guest speakers. Monday will cover many aspects of the business of selling books, plus showcase as many authors as can be squeezed in. 
Details: 18-19 June, in person, presented at Adelaide Convention Centre.

SYMPOSIUM: ISEA 2023 Symposium (France and online)
ISEA (International Symposium on Electronic Art) is one of the world’s most prominent international arts and technology events, bringing together scholarly, artistic and scientific domains in an interdisciplinary discussion and showcase of creative productions applying new technologies in art, interactivity, and electronic and digital media. The theme for the 2023 event is Symbiosis, and it is described as transdisciplinary and inter-sectorial event (including visual arts, theatre, music, design, cinema, sociology, philosophy, economics, engineering, mathematics, biology and more).
Details: 16-21 June, in person plus online registration, presented in Paris, France.


CONFERENCE: Eighteenth International Conference on the Arts in Society (international/online)
The Eighteenth International Conference on the Arts in Society offers an interdisciplinary forum for discussion of the role of the arts in society, under the theme New Aesthetic Expressions: The Social Role of Art. It is a place for critical engagement, examination and experimentation, developing ideas that connect the arts to their contexts in the world – on stage, in studios and theatres, classrooms, museums and galleries, on the streets and in communities. As a research network, Arts in Society is defined by its scope and concerns and is motivated to build strategies for action framed by its shared themes and tensions.
Details: 5-6 July, in person and online, presented at Jagiellonian University, Kraków, Poland.


CONFERENCE: Arts Activated Conference (NSW)
The next biennial Arts Activated Conference will take place in 2023, presented by Accessible Arts in partnership with a range of industry, community, government and corporate partners. It is a two-day event to share information and ideas about advancing arts and disability, both for arts practitioners with disability and audiences with disability. It is usually held in August.
Details: to be announced.

CONFERENCE: Australian Festival Industry Conference (AFIC) (NSW)
Established in 2019, the Australian Festival Industry Conference (AFIC) is the only conference in Australia and Asia Pacific dedicated exclusively to servicing the thousands of festival industry professionals that produce quality music, arts and culture, food and drink. This year’s conference will be held in Sydney.
Details: 30-31 August, in person, presented at Luna Park, Sydney.

MEETING: Australian Performing Arts Exchange [APAX] (Qld)
In 2023, the Australian Performing Arts Exchange will be presented in Cairns/Gimuy. APAX has evolved from an arts market and a conference into a single national gathering of more than 450 performing arts workers to develop tours and cultivate the partnerships that support the ongoing creation and presentation of Australian performing arts.
Details: 28 August – 1 September, in person, presented in Cairns.

CONFERENCE: UX Australia  (online)
UX Australia is Australia’s premier conference about UX (user experience), product and service design, and the surrounding disciplines of research, content, operations, management and more. Now in its 15th year, this online event includes conference presentations, activities and workshops, with local and international presenters covering topics and ideas relevant to experienced practitioners, newbies and everyone in between.
Details: 22-25 August, online and in person, presented in Sydney.


Returning in 2023, Artlands will brings together 80 regional practitioners: 20 people under 20, 10 Knowledge Circle First Nations leaders and 10 people from other industries in a part symposium/part think tank/part workshop event. The three-day event will facilitate the creation of an ambitious set of guiding principles for Regional Arts Australia and the regional and arts sector into the future. Artlands provides a series of critical narratives across industry, research and academia that reflect current emerging trends and case studies and respond to challenges and opportunities experienced throughout regional Australian arts practice. One of the key outcomes will be a printed publication that documents the discussions.
Details: 6-8 September, in person, presented at the National Gallery of Australia, Canberra.

TALKS: Sydney Contemporary (NSW)
Sydney Contemporary is set to return to its physical venue, Carriageworks in September, showcasing 80 leading galleries and four days of art with a full program of talks on topics of the day influencing the art market and contemporary practice.
Details: 7-10 September, in person, presented at Carriageworks, Sydney.

CONFERENCE: 2023 ASA Conference (VIC)
Delivering an in person or online hybrid conference, the Australian Society of Archivists (ASA) will meet on Naarm country/Melbourne this year with the theme Rising to our Challenges: Archives at the G, drawing inspiration from the Melbourne Cricket Ground (the ‘G’) as an iconic Melbourne sporting venue. Archives, like those of the ‘G’, can also reach across the community and evoke passion, emotion and devotion.
Details: 4-7 September, in person and online, presented at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, Melbourne.

CONFERENCE: 20th ICOM-CC 2023 (international)
The 20th Triennial Conference of the International Council of Museums’ Committee for Conservation (ICOM-CC) will be held in Valencia, Spain, with the theme Working Towards a Sustainable Past. It will consider sustainability from other vantage points, such as cultural sustainability, institutional sustainability and even professional sustainability. The conference will attract around 160 international speakers and around 900 delegates, including conservators, scientists, historians and art historians, curators, librarians, archivists, students, collection managers and directors from the world’s leading cultural heritage institutions and the private sector.
Dates: 18-22 September, presented in Valencia, Spain.

CONFERENCE: Sixteenth International Conference on the Inclusive Museum (Canada and online)
The Inclusive Museum Research Network (part of the Association of Art Museum Curators – AAMC) is brought together by a shared concern for the future role of the museum and how it can become more inclusive. The conference offers a selection of panels, keynotes, workshops and breakout opportunities for socialising with other conference-goers under the theme for 2023 – Museum Transformations: Pathways to Community Engagement.
Details: 18-20 September, in person and online, presented in Vancouver, Canada.

FORUM: Australian Performing Arts Forum (formerly ATF) (QLD)
The seventh national forum, produced by Theatre Network Australia, will be held during the Brisbane Festival in September. APAF is a biennial three day gathering of 300 – 400 representatives from the Australian theatre and wider performing arts sector. Bringing together practitioners, producers and cultural provocateurs from across the country, the APAF provides a platform for an exchange of ideas.
Details: mid September, at the Brisbane Powerhouse in person. Dates to be announced soon!


TALKS: Panpa-panpalya, Tarnanthi (SA)
The Tarnanthi Festival begins at AGSA with a public celebration. AGSA also hosts the insightful panpa-panpalya ideas conference for the opening weekend, led by notable Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists, curators, thinkers and writers, alongside an extensive array of talks, tours, performances, workshops, creative activities and education programs.
Details: Opening weekend, 20-22 October, in person, presented at Art Gallery of South Australia.


CONFERENCE: Communicating the Arts (Singapore)
With the theme Art + Technology the celebrated arts conference Communicating the Arts returns for its 27th edition of this global forum – this time in neighbouring Singapore.
Details: 20-22 November, in person.

This year’s annual CIMAM (International Committee for Museums and Collections of Modern Art) conference will be presented in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Victoria Noorthoorn, Director of the Museo de Arte Moderno de Buenos Aires, has invited the global museum community, noting that this year’s event will include a third day of customised visits for each of the (approximately) 220 museum professionals in attendance.
Details: 9-11 November, in person, presented in Argentina.


CONFERENCE: 2023 AAANZ conference (Australia or New Zealand)
The annual AAANZ Conference takes place in either Australia or New Zealand. The conference attracts around 500 delegates for a two- to three-day program, which typically includes over 150 papers, keynote lectures, graduate masterclasses, networking, round tables on publishing, funding and other events. It is an important event for scholars working within the fields of art history, art theory, curatorship, art education and arts practice. In the past it has been held in December.
Details: to be announced.

What did we miss? Email editor@artshub.com.au with updates and inclusions.

Update 14/2/23: We have removed ICDIAVE 2023: 17. International Conference on Digital Installation Art and Visual Effects (NSW), following advice that there is widespread suspicion that these conferences are not legitimate.

Gina Fairley is ArtsHub's National Visual Arts Editor. For a decade she worked as a freelance writer and curator across Southeast Asia and was previously the Regional Contributing Editor for Hong Kong based magazines Asian Art News and World Sculpture News. Prior to writing she worked as an arts manager in America and Australia for 14 years, including the regional gallery, biennale and commercial sectors. She is based in Mittagong, regional NSW. Twitter: @ginafairley Instagram: fairleygina