Australian Tea Cultural Seminar

Community Arts & Cultural Development

Art in the Culture of Tea

Art & Culture can be perceived in many ways by people and the communities they live in. Art has been included in the culture of tea for thousands of years but NOT in Australia. AUSTCS looks to change this, please help us.

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The members of AUSTCS, believe Australia deserves its own identifiable tea culture. Not a veiled replication of a British culture practised in the 1950s and 60s. But a tea culture that speaks of the Australian identity, and better portrays our cultural and heritage make-up, including our first peoples. A tea culture that all Australians can feel comfortable with, one that represents us all, both here at home and overseas. Most of all, an Australian tea culture that can encourage and engage us all to become more aware of the pleasures and benefits of tea.

The word CULTURE can be used in so many ways, just a few simple examples could be
• she immersed herself in the culture of our local people,
• when it comes to music, arts or literature you won’t find much culture in this little one-horse town.
Generally we refer to culture as being the ideas, customs and social behaviour of a particular people or society. If this is so, then how should we describe the tea culture of Australia, if in fact there is one!

Looking at famous tea cultures from around the World, we can’t go past the intricate, codified but spectacularly beautiful Japanese tea ceremony. The artistic interpretation by its presenter is choreographed to a fine degree, the utensils and ceramics, art works, floral displays, Kimono being worn, even the way they wear their hair is filled with art, ritual and cultural significance.

Then with more than ten thousand years of tea culture, China the home of tea. Where poets, calligraphers, academics, artists and Song Emperors held tea culture in high esteem. Creating works of great significance, showcasing their pride of tea culture, on canvas, in sculpture or written works, artists of the Song revered tea culture. Today, we can enjoy the delicate but orchestrated moves of a Chinese Gong Fu tea maker, their moves choreographed like dance, dramatic as in opera, yet simple as a water colour.

Australia, the land of multiculturalism has no tea culture to call its own!

AUSTCS is the body to address this Australian need and that’s why members, volunteers and management have placed their own money behind this organization. The annual Australian Tea Cultural Seminar presented by AUSTCS brings together people from many diverse backgrounds, from every corner of Australia and globally.

In 2020, delegates of the seminar will be once again gifted with a tea tasting cup, which can be used at the seminar as part of the opening ritual “Welcome by Tea”. A ritual that brings tea, art and community together.

The Australian designed and made cups are a result of collaboration between AUSTCS and the Australian Ceramics Association. The competition invites potters to submit a unique cup for consideration, the winning cup being commissioned by AUSTCS and gifted to delegates.

We would like to ask you, to consider supporting this unique teacup competition and the commissioning of the winning potter to produce the 2020 tea tasting cups. Find out more at:

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The Australian Tea Cultural Seminar is an annual event that brings together the Australian tea community and provides a platform for comprehensive discussion, collaboration and innovation for the promotion, awareness, and culture of leaf tea.

The Australian tea community comprises not just tea businesses but enthusiasts, growers and producers. Along with members of the hospitality industry, representatives from the education sector, individuals and organizations associated with the arts and, those from the traditional and alternative health professions. In fact, it’s anyone and everyone who believes in a vibrant future for leaf tea, its consumption and culture in Australia.

Tea and its culture spans the globe, Australians come from all the regions of our world and so, our tea culture should reflect our indigenous heritage along with our multicultural make-up. A true Australian tea culture.


Adeline Teoh


Joanne Downs



Artists Website