About Sunshine Arts Fest

Since opening our doors in 1994, Sunshine Plaza has been at the heart of the Sunshine Coast community. We’re proud to have created a world-class experience while retaining a sense of place — a place where the Coast connects.

Whether it’s about exploring exceptional brands or stocking up on every day essentials; meeting for a meal, a drink or an experience — Sunshine Plaza has been one of the community’s favourite places to gather for close to three decades.

To this end, we launched Sunshine Arts Fest in 2023 to reflect our continued commitment to connecting our local community. This high school competition both celebrates our region’s brightest creative young minds and provides an opportunity for the community to engage with their installations with the help of augmented reality (AR) technology.

This year, Sunshine Arts Fest has given six high schools from the Sunshine Coast region the opportunity to create visually engaging installations, using augmented reality to tell their story. Schools have designed and installed their interpretation of the competition’s annual theme which, in its inaugural year, is: Let the sunshine in.

Participating schools have also had the opportunity to learn from our Artist Ambassador, Sarah Sculley, who hosted two free workshops with students and teachers at each participating school to guide them through the process.

Installations are on display at Sunshine Plaza and our independent judges as well as votes from the broader public will determine who will share in the $5,000 prize pool and secure the highly coveted title of Sunshine Arts Fest winner!

Why Sunshine Arts Fest?

Sunshine Arts Fest encapsulates our community values by:

• Bringing our community together to encourage and celebrate our next generation of creative minds.
• Creating a new experience for our community by combining more traditional art forms with exciting new technologies that are transforming the way we experience and engage with the arts.
• Encouraging collaboration in schools as they strive to create both a visually engaging installation to entice our shoppers and incorporating cutting-edge technology.
• Stimulating interest and exploring new digital skills that young creatives can transfer into the jobs of the future.
• Giving our community the opportunity to influence the outcome of Sunshine Arts Fest by voting for their People’s Choice winner.

Key dates for 2023

15 February

Official launch event at Sunshine Plaza, school applications open online

28 February

School applications close, judges review submissions and select six successful schools

6 March

Successful schools announced and sent full brief

March to May

School workshops delivered at successful schools by Artist Ambassador at mutually agreed times

7 June

Installation date at Sunshine Plaza (schools bump-in after trading hours)

8 June

Installations live and public voting opens to determine People’s Choice Award

17 July

Final judging completed and public voting closes

19 July

Award presentation: announcement of overall winner and People’s Choice Award

23 July

Installations removed from Sunshine Plaza by schools (after trading hours)

Click here to vote now for your favourite installation.

Terms & Conditions apply. Click here to see the full Terms & Conditions of Sunshine Arts Fest.